Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Khmer scholar puts accent on academic literature

Khmer scholar puts accent on academic literature

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Author Cheang Ravy compiles volumes of grammar and literary know-how. PHOTO SUPPLIED

Khmer scholar puts accent on academic literature

While many new writers are emerging to author novels or books expressing their ideas and opinions, Cheang Ravy is writing books for scholars who like to study the existing Khmer literature.

“This is my specialty. If I had to write on some other topic such as math, physics or geography, I would not be able to do it because I do not know enough about it and it is not within my expertise,” he said.

Ravy said that his motivation for writing books on Khmer grammar and literature is that although some people think those topics are well-covered, in his view such works are not very abundant relative to other languages and many that do exist overlap in content and ideas.

He said he has tried to research and write these kinds of books because he wants to explain new ideas, methods and discoveries totally different from those previously covered in the Khmer language.

“Overall, no matter what other people think, I will always try to write and research as much as possible to contribute to society and to give the next generation a richer supply of reading material,” he said.

Ravy holds a Master’s degree from the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP) in linguistics and is currently a lecturer and a member of the dictionary committee at the National Council of the Khmer Language.

In the past, he has written a number of articles in modern Khmer on linguistics related topics as well as a glossary of idioms used in Khmer politics, essays on the links between the modern Khmer language and ancient languages and the use of proverbs in Khmer society and a glossary of words related to the body.

As for the field of writing in Cambodia, he said he has seen a significant increase in the number of writers and books published in recent years, but mostly advice books, inspirational or motivational stories and fiction, whereas in terms of actual research and scientific writing there are still a lot of shortcomings in the literature available in Khmer that require people writing on these topics to make a more concerted effort.

“Writing provides many benefits to society, such as new ideas, new discoveries, educating and enriching research papers, and encouraging a learning environment where people often read.

“However, writing can also have some negative effects on society if the books purport to be scientific but aren’t written based on research and the scientific method or they don’t respect other people’s intellectual property and just copy other’s works to claim as their own for personal gain, that is just immoral and not good for society,” he said.


  • 12th Cambodia int’l film festival to see return of Hollywood star

    Phnom Penh is set to come alive with the magic of cinema as the highly anticipated 12th Cambodia International Film Festival (CIFF) takes centre stage. Boasting an impressive line-up of 188 films from 23 countries, including captivating shorts, feature films, documentaries and animation, the festival promises an

  • Bareknuckle champion wants Kun Khmer fighter

    Dave Leduc, who is the current openweight Lethwei boxing champion in Myanmar, has announced that he will travel to Cambodia this year to challenge SEA Games gold medallist Prum Samnang any time that is convenient, after their planned match later this month in Slovakia was

  • Struggling Battambang artist dreams of staging full-scale gallery exhibition

    Leav Kimchhoth, a 55-year-old artist from Battambang province, is a familiar face to locals and tourists alike on the streets of the riverside in Phnom Penh. The one-armed painter and illustrator often hawks his work near the night market on weekends and public holidays. He

  • Fresh Covid warnings as Thai hospital fills

    A senior health official reminds the public to remain vigilant, as neighbouring countries experience an increase in Covid-19 cases, with the latest surge appearing to be a result of the Omicron XBB.1.5 sub-variant. Or Vandine, secretary of state and spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health,

  • New Law on Taxation comes into effect

    Cambodia has enacted the eagerly-awaited new Law on Taxation, which aims to improve the national tax regime’s compliance with present and future international standards and economic conditions; encourage accountability, effectiveness and transparency in the collection process; and promote investment in the Kingdom. King Norodom

  • PM warns of int’l election interference

    With the national election scheduled to take place in less than two months, Prime Minister Hun Sen has warned foreign nations and their diplomats not to interfere into Cambodia’s domestic affairs. He also hinted that their statements on court verdicts handed down to any