In Cambodia before 1970, when the country was drawn into the Vietnam conflict through which the Khmer Rouge came to power, older people held a respected place in village society. Old age-which started in one’s fifties or sixties-was expected to be a time of relative leisure. Older people stayed active, but worked on less demanding tasks such as housekeeping, weaving mats, or tending vegetables, and took more time to visit neighbours. Families were large and lived together in the same village for generations. Obedience and respect to parents was reinforced through religion and custom, and parents could (except in the case of some unexpected catastrophe) count on their children to support and care for them in their old age. Much of older people’s life centred around Buddhism and the wat (Buddhist temple) and making merit for the next life. Further details may be found in Ebihara (1971), who provides one of the few anthropological accounts of village life in pre-war Cambodia.