The impact of missionaries around the world has been widely condemned by anthropologists, historians and medical professionals. They have been accused of suppressing indigenous languages, religious and social practice, disrupting countries’ social fabrics and prohibiting contraception. Moreover, missionaries were, on the whole, stalwart defenders of European colonialism. However, that does not mean they are unworthy of nuanced academic study, indeed given the immense socio-political and religious change they have fostered, academic engagement is crucial to understanding the outcomes of their activity.
Negotiating Borders and Borderlands, edited by Gorky Chakraborty and Supurna Banerjee, delves into the intricate dynamics of India’s borders and the everyday experiences of those living in its borderlands. It features a diverse collection of articles contributed by various authors, aiming to analyze and portray how borders have influenced the destiny of countries and their inhabitants.
In mid-April, Myanmar’s military bombed a village in the country’s northwest, killing over a hundred people in what’s been considered the deadliest attack in the now two-year civil war in the country: The result of the Myanmar military’s coup in February 2021.
The Rohingya population, from Myanmar’s Rakhine State, are a community almost living entirely in exile, whether in refugee camps in Bangladesh, or working on boats throughout the Indian Ocean. The Kutupalong refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, is now the world’s largest.
The Myanmar coup on February 1, 2021 shocked the world, and ended an opening that had fostered hopes for democratization and economic development. The Tatmadaw, Myanmar’s military, reversed a decade’s worth of changes, and sparked a civil conflict that has continued for two years since the coup.
In this remarkable debut, Kaamil Ahmed tells the story of the displacement of the Rohingya from their home in Myanmar’s western Rakhine state and their ongoing search for refuge. This is not a new story, but Ahmed puts the spotlight firmly on the Rohingya perspective and allows them to tell their own story in their own words. The book is an impressive mix of history, political analysis and extensive reportage from Myanmar, Bangladesh and Malaysia.
Half a year on from the publication of India: A History in Objects, the British Museum and Thames & Hudson have released a new volume of the same vibrant format on Southeast Asia, an endeavor at least as ambitious as that for the Subcontinent: “it is hardly possible to be comprehensive,” as Alexandra Green modestly admits in her introduction.