Looking at the Tuol Sleng Museum of Genocidal Crimes, Cambodia, on Flickr and YouTube
Media, Culture & Society , Volume 36 - Issue 6 p. 790- 809
‘Delve into the dark side of Cambodian history with a visit to Tuol Sleng Museum, essential to understanding the pain of the past’, Lonely Planet Cambodia claims. During the Khmer Rouge regime (1975–9) the Tuol Svay Prey high school in Phnom Penh was used under the codename S21 as a torture-and-execution centre. In 1979, the government of the newly established People’s Republic of Kampuchea had it refurbished as memorial. Today, people from all over the world visit Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and shoot videos and photos they later on post on blogs, Facebook pages and other social media. This article explores how social networks affect the production, distribution, and consumption of Tuol Sleng as site of memory. It focuses on two digital platforms: Flickr and YouTube. The article is divided into three parts. First it examines how Flickr and YouTube can be used as inadvertent archives providing material for a visual history of Tuol Sleng. Second, it analyses the processes of remediation people resort to for communicating and sharing their experience in the museum. Finally, it explores the mechanisms of community building, and their limited effects, as users watch and comment on these accounts of Tuol Sleng.
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Benzaquen-Gautier, S.D.F. (2014). Looking at the Tuol Sleng Museum of Genocidal Crimes, Cambodia, on Flickr and YouTube. Media, Culture & Society, 36(6), 790–809. doi:10.1177/0163443714532983