“Holiday in Cambodia” by Dead Kennedys

The Kennedys’ “Holiday in Cambodia” is primarily targeted at college kids who assume the position of activists just because they have studied certain topics at school. The writer’s point here is that such people shouldn’t feel that they fully understand the predicament of poor people when they continue to enjoy their privileges.

Throughout the rest of the song, the writer suggests that the solution is that the rich kids should spend time with the poor victims they constantly talk about helping. Since the song was written during the Cambodian Genocide, the writer urges rich college kids to take a holiday there to experience for themselves the violence that occurs in that area.

In the concluding verses of the track, the writer cites Pol Pot and the events surrounding the Cambodian Genocide which included people working extraneously in labor camps and the oppressions and killings that happened.

Who wrote “Holiday in Cambodia”?

The following wrote this song:

  • Klaus Flouride
  • Jello Biafra
  • Bruce Slesinger
  • East Bay Ray

The Dead Kennedys subsequently released it in May of 1980. It was the thirteenth track off the “Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables” album.

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