Bookshelf Spotlight: History, Culture & Art of Ancient Southeast Asia

Featured Books

* A History of Myanmar Since Ancient Times: Traditions and Transformations
* A Thousand Years of Philippine History before the coming of the Spaniards
* Ancient Vietnam: History and Archaeology
* The Indonesia Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The World Readers)
* Thailand: The Golden Kingdom

A History of Myanmar Since Ancient Times: Traditions and Transformations


by Michael Aung-Thwin
Reaktion Books, 2012

The Republic of the Union of Myanmar is often characterized as a place of repressive military rule, civil war, censorship, and corrupt elections-and despite recent attempts to promote tourism to see the country’s natural beauty, it is not yet a travel hotspot. Most of the Western world remains unaware of the storied history and rich culture found in this Southeast Asian country. In A History of Myanmar since Ancient Times, Michael Aung-Thwin and Maitrii Aung-Thwin take us from the sacred stupas (structures containing Buddhist relics) of the plains of Bagan to the grand, colonial-era British mansions, finding the splendor that remains in this forgotten country. They delve into Myanmar’s nearly three-thousand-year history, discovering the first traces of civilization that appeared during the Stone Age, witnessing the protests of Buddhist monks during the early twentieth century, and describing the colonial era of British rule and the republic that followed. This book also considers the state of Myanmar today, examining the 2010 elections-the first in over twenty years-and exploring the lives, culture, and ambitions of the Burmese people. The most comprehensive history of Myanmar ever published in the English language, this book makes a significant contribution to our understanding of Southeast Asia.

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A Thousand Years of Philippine History before the coming of the Spaniards


by Austin Craig
Nabu Press, 2010

This is a reproduction of a book published before 1923. This book may have occasional imperfections such as missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant marks, etc. that were either part of the original artifact, or were introduced by the scanning process. We believe this work is culturally important, and despite the imperfections, have elected to bring it back into print as part of our continuing commitment to the preservation of printed works worldwide. We appreciate your understanding of the imperfections in the preservation process, and hope you enjoy this valuable book.

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Ancient Vietnam: History and Archaeology


by Anne-Valerie Schweyer
River Books Press Dist A C, 2012

The history of Viet Nam is one of spectacular confrontations, both cultural and ideological between the world of the Chinese, a world adopted by the ethnic Viet living in the Red river basin, and the Indian world facets of which are seen in the Cham, whose numerous small kingdoms were strung out all along the coast from north of Hue to south of Phan Rang.

The first part of this book presents a comprehensive history of Viet Nam from the 6th to 15th centuries, highlighting the clashes between the two major civilisations which are the foundation of modern Viet Nam.

The second part takes the reader on a tour of over 60 archaeological sites which are a testament to this history. Maps, plans and numerous photographs will help us to experience the history of ancient Viet Nam both in its early beginnings and its subsequent evolution.

French scholar Anne-Valerie Schweyer is an acknowledged expert in Cham history and has contributed to many books and journals.

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The Indonesia Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The World Readers)


edited by Tineke Hellwig and Eric Tagliacozzo
Duke University Press Books, 2009

Indonesia is the world’s largest archipelago, encompassing nearly eighteen thousand islands. The fourth-most populous nation in the world, it has a larger Muslim population than any other. The Indonesia Reader is a unique introduction to this extraordinary country. Assembled for the traveler, student, and expert alike, the Reader includes more than 150 selections: journalists’ articles, explorers’ chronicles, photographs, poetry, stories, cartoons, drawings, letters, speeches, and more. Many pieces are by Indonesians; some are translated into English for the first time. All have introductions by the volume’s editors. Well-known figures such as Indonesia’s acclaimed novelist Pramoedya Ananta Toer and the American anthropologist Clifford Geertz are featured alongside other artists and scholars, as well as politicians, revolutionaries, colonists, scientists, and activists.
Organized chronologically, the volume addresses early Indonesian civilizations; contact with traders from India, China, and the Arab Middle East; and the European colonization of Indonesia, which culminated in centuries of Dutch rule. Selections offer insight into Japan’s occupation (1942-45), the establishment of an independent Indonesia, and the post-independence era, from Sukarno’s presidency (1945-67), through Suharto’s dictatorial regime (1967-98), to the present Reformasi period. Themes of resistance and activism recur: in a book excerpt decrying the exploitation of Java’s natural wealth by the Dutch; in the writing of Raden Ajeng Kartini (1879-1904), a Javanese princess considered the icon of Indonesian feminism; in a 1978 statement from East Timor objecting to annexation by Indonesia; and in an essay by the founder of Indonesia’s first gay activist group. From fifth-century Sanskrit inscriptions in stone to selections related to the 2002 Bali bombings and the 2004 tsunami, The Indonesia Reader conveys the long history and the cultural, ethnic, and ecological diversity of this far-flung archipelago nation.

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Thailand: The Golden Kingdom


by William Warren et al & Luca Invernizzi Tettoni
Periplus Editions, 1999

From the beaches of the south to the mountains of the north, Thailand is a beautiful and diverse land. ‘Thailand – The Golden Kingdom’ encapsulates Thai history, culture, and art in one compact volume. It gives an endearing portrait of Thailand’s multi-ethnic population, the people’s beliefs and ways of life and sets it in an historical and cultural context. Over 140 color photographs illustrate the clear text about all aspects of one of Asia’s most fascinating places.

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