Troubling the Water: A Dying Lake and a Vanishing World in Cambodia


Product Details

$21.95  $20.41
Potomac Books
Publish Date
6.0 X 9.0 X 0.37 inches | 0.54 pounds

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About the Author

Abby Seiff is a journalist who was based in Southeast Asia for nearly a decade, working as an editor at the Cambodia Daily and the Phnom Penh Post and writing for publications such as Time, the Economist, Al Jazeera, and Pacific Standard, among others. She is now a freelance correspondent.


"The destruction of human life can occur slowly, indirectly, and even imperceptibly, which makes it no less of a crime. . . . This book reminds us of how much our humanity is connected to our environment."--Youk Chhang, founder and executive director of the Documentation Center of Cambodia
"A haunting and lyrical eulogy to Cambodia's once magnificent Tonle Sap Lake and the water culture of Cambodia."--Elizabeth Becker, author of You Don't Belong Here: How Three Women Rewrote the Story of War
"Groundbreaking. . . . The author exposes the human costs of [the Tonle Sap's degradation] with empathy and a deep understanding of the issues involved."--Milton Osborne, author of The Mekong: Turbulent Past, Uncertain Future
"In Abby Seiff's rendition, the Tonle Sap Lake sometimes appears nymphlike, alluring and magical, like the celestial bodies carved on the walls of Cambodian temples at the lake's edges. It appears human at other times, meshed into the lives of those who live around it, off of it. Seiff's Troubling the Water is a beautiful and powerful ode to an ancient but rapidly disappearing world of interdependence between people and nature. A gifted writer and sensitive observer, she re-creates a world readers will want to save. A must-read."--Saumya Roy, author of Castaway Mountain: Love and Loss among the Wastepickers of Mumbai
"Abby Seiff has courageously covered Cambodia's troubling trajectory in the twenty-first century. This book is her testament to the life and death of the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia, one of the most productive inland fisheries in the world, a people and way of life quickly disappearing."--Sophal Ear, author Aid Dependence in Cambodia: How Foreign Assistance Undermines Democracy
"A powerful book that perfectly captures the vulnerabilities of one of the world's most important lakes, Cambodia's Tonle Sap, by documenting the fragility of life for the millions who subsist on its floodplain. Seiff's painstaking research, coupled with her years of reporting from Cambodia, gives voice to the marginalized and the unheard. Troubling the Water is a unique, lyrical, and immensely readable account of the impact posed by the building of dams on the Mekong and of the profound risks that the lake's demise holds for a nation. Highly recommended."--Robert Carmichael, author of When the Clouds Fell from the Sky: A Disappearance, a Daughter's Search, and Cambodia's First War Criminal
"A timely and important account."--Ming Li Yong, Contemporary Southeast Asia