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Christa Neuenhofer | profile | all galleries >> Koh Peak: Graveyard and Village, Ratanakiri Province, Cambodia. tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Koh Peak: Graveyard and Village, Ratanakiri Province, Cambodia.

The animist Cambodian hill tribe Kachork are an ethnic minority who live in Veunsai District in Ratanakiri Province in northeast Cambodia. Like the Tampoun they bury their dead in the jungle, some 500 metres away from their village. The following pictures were taken in the village Koh Peak near the Tonlé San River (or Se San River) and of their cemetery in the jungle.
When somebody dies they first have a ceremony in the village, then the deceased is buried in the forest, first in a rather simple grave. When the family has got enough money, they have a second celebration in the forest to which the whole village is invited. There is plenty of food and rice wine and a cow or buffalo is sacrificed. The dead family member also gets a jar of rice wine and now a fence is built around his/her grave with carvings and paintings, and in front of the grave two big statues are erected, a male and a female one. They are decorated with attributes that on the one hand were tools of their former lives and on the other hand they get things people wish them to possess in their future lives. Often these are rifles, but they also have sunglasses and mobile phones.
Once the ceremony is over normally nobody cares about the grave any more and it decays.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Gun, mobile phone and sun glasses, wishes for a future life. Kachork graveyard, Cambodia.
Gun, mobile phone and sun glasses, wishes for a future life. Kachork graveyard, Cambodia.
Sacrifical place with calf`s horns and lower jaw-bone in front of the grave. Kachork graveyard, Cambodia.
Sacrifical place with calf`s horns and lower jaw-bone in front of the grave. Kachork graveyard, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Temporary grave in Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Temporary grave in Kachork graveyard, Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Temporary grave with plough and basket in Kachork graveyard, Cambodia.
Temporary grave with plough and basket in Kachork graveyard, Cambodia.
Kachork people taking a bath in Tonlé San River, Cambodia.
Kachork people taking a bath in Tonlé San River, Cambodia.
Guardian of the animist villagers of Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Guardian of the animist villagers of Koh Peak, Cambodia.
House in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
House in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Abandoned houses in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Abandoned houses in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Girl on a porch in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Girl on a porch in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Little boy in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Little boy in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork children learn Khmer in a school in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork children learn Khmer in a school in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork children learn Khmer in a school in Koh Peak, Cambodia.
Kachork children learn Khmer in a school in Koh Peak, Cambodia.