SITE MAP General information Working With An Interpreter Becoming an Interpreter Interpreter Community
Language Map
Bits of Culture
Point-To-Talk Booklets
Additional Resources
BITS OF CULTURE - Cambodia
 
Languages
Map
Cultural Values
Main Religion & Death Concepts/Rituals
Health Care Values
Diet
Interesting Facts
 

Languages

Official language:
Khmer

Other languages:
English
French

<top>

 

Map



<top>
 
Cultural Values
  • Family oriented, but due to many war casualties, fictive kinship practiced
    3 generations frequently live in one house .
  • Elders are key in decision making .
  • Polite, quiet, obedient children are the norm .
  • Adults and children may wear string or chain around neck with amulet containing Buddhist transcription for protection – do not remove either without permission
    <top>
 
Main Religion & Death Concepts/Rituals
  • Buddhism .
  • Death faced by family in quiet, passive manner .
  • Incense may be burned .
  • Family, monks may wash the body down and shroud it in white .
  • Unlikely to agree to organ donation or autopsy because they believe in
    reincarnation for which the body must be intact
    Bodies are traditionally creamed

    <top>
 
Health Care Values
  • Sins of past lives and hot/cold imbalance believed to cause physical illness .
  • Belief that nutrition is important to prevent illness, but not physical activity .
  • Uncomfortable with giving blood or blood specimen due to heat loss
  • Modesty can be an issue with some diagnostic tests

    <top>
 
Diet
  • Rice is a staple, eaten at all three meals .
  • Individuals have own bowls and take food from communal bowl
  • A Cambodian meal almost always includes a soup, and fish is the nation's mainstay - grilled freshwater fish, wrapped in lettuce or spinach and dipped into a nutty fish sauce, is a particular specialty.
  • Salad dishes are flavored with coriander, mint and lemongrass.

    <top>
 
Interesting Facts
  • Khmers have called their country Kampuchea (usually rendered Kambuja), since the l6th century. The name is derived from the word kambu-ja, meaning those born of Kambu (a figure of Indian mythology).

    <top>