MERCHANT VENTURER AMONG THE SEA GYPSIES
by Ainsworth, Leopold
Book order code : E 22118
This report is a seminal work on the Moken nomads and Lower Burma written
by a businessman studying the area for its economic potential. The author's
ability to describe and penetrate into the very heart of the social
and economic life of the Mergui Archipe-lago's inhabitants makes this
work both entertaining and very informative. Ainsworth describes the
land, sea bed, and forests of many of the Moken islands, and trade relations
established on the basis of local products, but his ethnological observations
on disappearing funeral rituals and the love relationships between members
of the different populations with whom he temporarily lived are particularly
valuable today. His descriptions of Victoria Point, the lovely city
of Mergui, and other picturesque villages can be appreciated by the
most demanding travelers. Much of what he describes is still there,
but, as is the case with the political life of the region, it is in
great need of conscientious maintenance and adaptation work.
(Bangkok 1999; repr. from 1930) ISBN 974-7534-09-6
330 pp., 16 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
by Aung Aung Taik
Book order code : E 21301
The biography of a Burmese painter exiled in the USA. When a sensitive
man, a painter and Buddhist, is separated from his homeland, culture
and co-religionists by the universal experience of emigration, what
happens to him? Aung Aung Taik underwent that experience. Ranging from
the social elite of Burmese society to the fast-food supermarket culture
of America, this treatise overcomes the past through love. It hands
down as instructive a guide as any young painter could want on the genesis
of that craft and its relationship to Buddhist teaching. An Asian in
America, an artist in the world, few modern writers explore so profoundly
the immediate and personal meaning of dharma.
(Bangkok 1988) ISBN 974-8495-30-2
269 pp., with author's illus., 165 x 215 mm
: Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) from the Second World War
to Civil War and Cyber Warfare
by Ball, Desmond
Book order code : E 22014
This first book on signals warfare provides a unique view into all of
the important military and political developments in Burma over the
past half century based on the most secret and authoritative intelligence
sources, i.e., signals intelligence (SIGINT) which involves radio interception,
telecommunications surveillance, crypt analysis or code-breaking, and
analysis of supposedly confidential signals. This book is filled with
fascinating and explosive revelations about many important issues, such
-the special relationship between Burma and China. Over the past decades,
China has become Burma's principal ally, major arms supplier, and only
secret intelligence partner.
-the opium and heroin trade. Burma now accounts for two-thirds of the
world's total production of heroin and the drug armies maintain sophisticated
intelligence collection and communications systems.
-the SIGINT activities of the ethnic insurgent organizations, such
as the Karen National Army.
-the battles at Manerplaw and Kawmura in January-February 1995, which
involved some 15,000-20,000 troops, and which resulted in the loss of
these strongholds to the Burmese Army.
-the use of electronic surveillance by the military junta in Rangoon
to control dissent and rebellion.
-the organisation of Burma's security and intelligence establishment,
including the dreaded Military Intelligence Service (MIS) headed by
Khin Nyunt, and the new Cyber Warfare Department.
-the build-up of Burma's conventional arms capabilities, giving it the
largest armed forces in Asia by the turn of the century.
(Bangkok 1998) ISBN 974-8434-50-8
310 pp., illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
A JOURNEY IN BURMA (1861-1862)
Adolf Bastian's Travels in Southeast Asia Vol.1
by Bastian, Adolf
Book order code : E 22435
A Journey in Burma of Adolf Bastian's Travels in South-East Asia, contains the travelogue written by Dr Adolf Bastian during his journeys in Burma. Bastian was a renowned ethnographer, who founded both the Ethnological Museum in Berlin and the Berlin Anthropological Society. In Burma he insisted on learning Burmese so as to obtain first-hand information about everything that struck his keen interest in the everyday and religious life of various ethnic groups. He traveled through Burma's disputed areas, which were the subject of peace negotiations between the British and the Burmese king, just after the Second Burmese War had ended. Bastian held numerous talks with key British officials. Journeying on the Irrawaddy, he visited small towns and pagodas hidden from travelers to arrive at Pagan's pagoda fields, where he spent time inspecting important monuments. As he writes, we learn in passing details about many of Burma's most beautiful pagodas, about its oil wells, about the role of Armenians in trade and the palace, about the religious customs of various ethnic groups, life in the bazaars, various types of fortune-telling, agricultural practices, forest products, dacoits and other criminals, omens and superstitions, American, French and Italian missionaries and their arguments with Buddhists, Burmese and European medical practices, the various forms of the Burmese language in use, and the inevitable celebrations. Bastian encountered Karen, Shan, Talein (Mon), Toungthu (Pa-0) and other tribespeople, and visited the former Burmese capitals of Ava, recently abandoned Amarapura, and Mandalay. A forced longer stay in Mandalay, involving a string of audiences with the Burmese king, allowed him to paint a detailed sketch of the city, life in the countryside, and the idiosyncrasies of palace politics. At the king's personal invitation, Bastian studied Buddhism while residing in the palace. Mandalay was then still in its infancy-an artificially created new capital away from English territory. Continuing his Journey on the River Sittang, he visited several provincial capitals. In passing, he provides much about the influence of the Talaing, whom he calls the 'Talein' (today's Mon), and their vanishing language and culture. Eventually Bastian returned on the Sittang river to the Burmese coast, from where he traveled on via Moulmein to the Siamese border.
(Bangkok 2004) 974-4800-58-5
332 pp., 150 x 210 mm., pbk.
WANDERING IN BURMA
Burmese Historical Reprint
Series No. 2
by Bird, G. W.
Book order code : E 22276
Reprint with new introduction 2001
Wanderings in Burma was "placed before the Public" in 1897
by S.W. Bird of the Education Department, Burma. The book compiles information
from the best available sources, government and others, supplemented
by twenty years personal experience in the country. A comprehensive
introduction includes special sections on the Shan States and information
for travelers, besides general history, geography and resources, the
administrative system, chief towns, important personages, languages,
religion, and the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company Ltd. As well as statistical
tables from the official Administration Report on the Province of Burma
for 1894-1895. Of the twenty-four journeys recorded in the book, river
travel with the I Irrawaddy Company was used for the itineraries Rangoon
to Bassein and Prome, Mandalay to Bhamo and Myitkyina, continuing on
the Chindwin River, and Pakokku to Kindat and Homalin. British Steam
Navigation ships were used southwards to Moulmein and Mergui. The Rangoon-Mandalay
journey was made by rail. Of particular interest are in -depth descriptions
of routes and places visited, including the main centers of Rangoon
and Mandalay, and covering detailed history, monuments, commerce and
daily life. Discussions of Burma's relation with neighboring countries
offer valuable political insights. Numerous maps, plans and illustrations
enrich the book.
(Bangkok, 2003) ,ISBN: 974-7534-91-6
513 pp., 66 pp. Illus. 20 pp maps, 3 folded in pockets, 135 x 210 mm
by Bruns, Axel R.H.
Book order code : E 22489
This work is an expanded version of the author's PhD thesis. As a long term resident of Rangoon he has close contacts with the craftsmen who make these beautiful marionettes, the puppeteers who perform with them and their modern brothers on stage as well as the audiences who watch the shows.
This comprehensive tome describes Burmese puppetry's glorious past as well as its more recent practice. Once the most dramatic art form, sponsored by the kings, it nearly fell into oblivion in the 20th century due to competition from rival performing arts and the introduction of cinemas, and more recently video and DVD.
In addition to vivid descriptions of traditional characters and themes of Burmese puppetry, the author draws parallels to related arts in neighbouring countries such as China, Indonesia, and Thailand. He also covers the impact of tourism and its influence on the revival of the marionette theater. The craftsmanship involved in producing puppets is covered in detail making it thus of special value for museum curators and collectors of Burmese puppets. Photographs, line drawings, a detailed glossary, and references complete the text.
(Bangkok, 2006) Bar Code 978-974-4800-88-6
199 pp., 19 pp. illus. 30 pp in color., 150 x 210 mm., pbk.
CAVE-TEMPLES OF WIN TAUNG
Central Burma Architecture, Culture and Murals
by Chew, Anne-May
Book order code : E 22454
This is the first comprehensive book about Po Win Taung, a soft volcanic rock hill, situated to the north-west of Central Burma. It is a huge, multi-level religious complex with about 800 rock-cut caves, which vary from a simple meditation cell to an imposing temple. The facades are decorated in low and high relief, with some entrances flanked by human or animal sculptures in the round. The interiors of the grottoes contain numerous statues carved into the rock and over 100 caves are adorned with mural paintings illustrating traditional scenes (the 28 Buddha of the Past, previous lives of Buddha Gotama,, and the Life of Buddha) including scenes of daily life. For the most part, the works of Po Win Taung date from the second Alva period (16th-18th centuries), and to a lesser extent, the colonial period (last quarter of the 19th till mid 20th century).
This book defines the characteristics of the Nyaung Yan style, generally designated as the Ava style, which is little known to the art world. The artistic treasures of Po Win Taung allow us to explore and comprehend this style to a much greater extent. They show a profound syncretism harmonizing local pre-Buddhist beliefs and the fundamental teachings of Theravada Buddhism as well as the different sources of inspiration (Chinese, Indian, Portuguese, Siamese.. Muslim and European) which have influenced the Nyaung Yan style.
(Bangkok, 2005) ISBN 974-4800-45-3
333 pp., 2 pp. maps, 70 pp. illus. in col., 210 x 300 mm, pbk.
: A View From Inside the Ruby Trade
by Clark, Carol
Book order code : E 22077
The book is based on the author's first hand experience working for
one of Bangkok's largest gem trading companies. It documents the ruby
trade in Burma, Thailand, and Vietnam. Called ma naw na ya in Burma-"Wish-fulfilling
stones"-rubies are believed to grant their wearer's wishes. Both
the trader's modern-day mysteries and old traditions are the subject
of this inside view.
(Bangkok 1999) ISBN 974-8434-67-2
128 pp., 150 x 210mm, pbk.
by Clifford, Hugh
Book order code : E 21400
A history of European exploration of Burma, Malaya, Siam, and Indo-China
from the earliest times. This reprint remains the best overview of European
exploration and discovery in Southeast Asia, with 6 additional old maps
from 1904. Since the publication of Further India, other authors have
written in detail about some of the explorations mentioned in it, but
none has attempted a work of the same scope. Not only does the book
provide a great range of material but it gives data which are difficult
to find elsewhere, such as on the opening up of Burma. The work remains
a solid and valuable source of information, and those interested in
the geography, topography, economy and history of Southeast Asia and
stories of courage and daring will wish to have a copy of the book.
It is a book to which one will want to turn often.
(Bangkok 1990; repr. from 1904) ISBN 974-8495-25-6
450 pp., 154 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm
A YEAR ON THE IRRAWADDY
by E. M. P. B.
Book order code : E 22015
This account was written by the wife of an oil-boat captain plying the
trade on the Irrawaddy River in Burma. It is the unassuming tale of
the hard lives of sailors and shoremen alike. The turn of the century,
when this wife took the unusual step of following her husband on board
for most of her time in Burma, saw many changes in the daily life on
the river: not least those caused by a small boom in trading and in
the exploitation of primary resources by British companies. The many
anecdotes in this account make for a colorful and insightful picture
of the life of those who were living outside the colonial circles and
high officialdom that are usually the subjects of expatriates' reports
of a tour of duty in the colony. Today's travellers to Burma may find
this book is interesting and useful comparative material and will, no
doubt, notice how little has changed in the lives of the common people
with the passing of regimes and doctrines.
(Bangkok 1998, repr. from 1911) ISBN 974-8434-26-5
150 pp., 8 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
ON HORSEBACK THROUGH INDOCHINA VOL.1
Assam, Burma, and the Andamans
by Ehlers, Otto E.
Book order code : E 22247
Volume 1. provides an account of the adventurous journey German traveler
Otto Ehlers undertook in 1891-1892. This volume starts with an elephant
hunt in Assam and ends on the Nicobar Islands in the Andaman Sea. Ehlers
traveled to the Khassia Mountains with the chief elephant hunter of
the Kheddah Department of British India, sailed on the Brahmaputra up
north and followed British and Gurkha troops in their military campaign
against the Maharaja of Manipur. Then he followed one of the British
columns to Mandalay, from where he traveled to the ruby mines in the
Shan States administered from Mogok, and further to Bhamo to end a trip
on the Irrawaddy in Rangoon. He then visited the Andaman Islands and
its English penal colony and various islands of the Nicobar group. In
passing, Ehlers interacted in his typical straightforward and humorous
manner with primitive tribes and high officials alike. His quick-witted
pen describes the Garos, several tribes of the Naga Mountains, the inhabitants
of semi-independent Manipur, Mandalay and its bazaars, British and Gurkha
army life in India and Upper Burma, the operation of ruby mines and
their lack of profitability, the jail and zoological garden of Rangoon,
the conditions of convicts in the Andamans, and various tribes of the
(Bangkok 2002; First English translation of 1901) ISBN 974-4800-05-4
192 pp., 12 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
ON HORSEBACK THROUGH INDOCHINA VOL.2
Burma, North Thailand,
the Shan States, and Yunnan
by Ehlers, Otto E.
Book order code : E 22225
This volume provides an account of the adventurous journey German traveler
Otto Ehlers undertook in 1891-1892. This volume chronicles the journey
starting from Moulmein on Burma's Andaman Sea coast and ending in Poofang
on the border between the Sipsong Pana, now Yunnan, and French Tonkin,
now Vietnam. Ehlers travels an unusual route; with intent to wander
away from the itinerary followed by earlier explorers. Traveling without
passports or official laissez-passers, but with letters of recommendation
from Prince Damrong, Siam's Minister of the Interior, and the British
Consul in Chiang Mai, Ehlers cunningly used the locals' fear of officialdom
and his own imagination. His skillful use of both helped him evade all
kinds of impositions, calamities, and problems in dealing with food
supplies and means of transportation to cross through British and partly
Chinese-claimed Shan States from Chiang Rai in Siam to Chiang Tung.
When Ehlers and his party were refused entry by Chinese officials coming
from Yunnan, he set off at night, headed for the border with France's
Tonkin colony, and escaped through the tea gardens of Ybang in the Sipsong
Pana. In the Shan States Ehlers observed the annual rocket firing competition
and describes market towns and mule-caravans plying the Yunnan-Burma
trails. Along his journey, Ehlers finds the time to observe and record
what strikes him as unusual or at variance with other accounts of the
numerous tribes and cities in the area. Hundreds of singular encounters
with people are described and the logistics of implementing shoestring
traveling are documented in a unique and colorful style.
(Bangkok 2001; First English translation of 1894) ISBN 974-7534-74-6
274 pp, 28 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
by Fielding-Hall, Harold
Book order code : E 21937
Originally published in 1900 as Palace Tales the book is an attempt
to rescue from complete oblivion one phase of life in the Mandalay Palace
in the times of the Burmese Kings. The Burmese King and Queen were sent
into exile in India by the British occupation force in 1886 and memories
of the old days started to fade. These stories are all founded upon
tales told to the author. They are not history, nor are they intended
to apply to any one king or queen. They are illustrations only of the
lighter side of life there, of the amusements and the trivialities of
the Palace. They are the little sunny places in the record of a semi-civilized
court whose more serious history consisted of plot and intrigue, violence
and murder. But there was laughter in the palace as well as sorrow,
sunshine as well as tears.
(Bangkok 1997) ISBN 974-8496-94-5
139 pp., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
: Past and Present
by Fraser-Lu, Sylvia
Book order code : I 8654
In this work, the author introduces the reader to the scope and beauty
of Burmese crafts by exploring the historical background, the foundations
of Burma's artistic traditions, and the temple and pagoda arts of brick,
stucco, sculpture, and painting, before embarking on a systematic survey
of the development and evolution of Burma's major crafts, such as bronze
and ironwork, wooden architecture, wood-carving, gold, silver, and jewelry,
ceramics, lacquer, textiles and costume, books, paper, baskets, mats,
(Kuala Lumpur, 1994, second printing 2002)
387pp., fully illus., partly in col., 230 x 290 mm
: Religion and Customs
by Gilhodes, A.
Book order code : E 21858
This book is a record of the myths and tales of the Kachin peoples of
Burma amongst whom the author lived. He discusses his findings with
the indigenous specialists in the Kachin religion, the Jaiwa, who are
ritual bards or reciters of the myths and tales in question.
As a direct result of Edmund Leach's work, Political Systems of Highland
Burma, the Kachin people played a major role in the development of social
anthropology. Leach made it clear that we can only comprehend the nature
of culture and society in Southeast Asia if we understand that each
such society is the outcome of processes of inter-group political and
social relations, where the boundary of each such group is set by the
existence and organizational character of its neighbors. He showed that
Kachin society of the mountains of northernmost Burma had its principle
structural limit in the neighboring Shan system of lowland principalities.
The Shan are Tai speaking people. Kachin society was shaped by its attempt
to live in the neighborhood of Shan society. Such a tribal society could
not, for all sorts of reasons having to do with the nature of life in
the mountains, readily adopt the Shan political order. When this was
tried, either it failed or the Kachin community in question tended to
become absorbed by the Shan. Indeed, the very dynamics of traditional
Kachin society lie in its tendency to oscillate between a form of organization
under powerful chiefs that comes close to the Shan ideal of ruling princes,
and a form of organization that was forced to reject the claims of such
dominance. Not surprisingly, this sort of cross-cultural awareness tends
to constitute much of a people's sense of their own identity and hence
becomes embedded in their basic religious ideas, cosmology, mythology
and way of life. Gilhodes's book serves as an essential foundation of empirical data
for Leach's now classical monograph, and is the only published example,
in any detail, of the kind of cross-cultural awareness that characterizes
the upland peoples of Southeast Asia. The documentation of this material
is of importance if only because scholars of the region have come to
rely so heavily upon Leach's 1954 book that they have long since lost
sight of the rich material lying behind the analytical argument, and
of the fact that there is an earlier literature that documents it in
(Bangkok 1996; repr. from 1922) ISBN 974-8496-51-1
253 pp., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
TWO YEARS IMPRISONMENT IN BURMA (1824-26)
: A Personal Narrative of Henry Gouger Burmese Historical Reprint Series no.1
by Gouger, Henry
Book order code : E 22315
Two Years imprisonment in Burma is narrative
by a British merchant who witnessed at first hand the traumatic effects
of the first Anglo-Burmese war on the Court and population of the Kingdom
of Ava. As a foreigner he was jailed in Let ma yoon prison in Ava where
he spent two years on death row, along with six others suspected of
being spies, one of whom was Dr.Adoniram Judson, whose life and work
is well documented elsewhere. The author offers a unique account of
a crucial period in the history of Burma, which is especially precious
for historians, scholars, researchers and students alike. Having finalized
rendering his experiences into a book 35 years after the events, Gouger
takes particular care to explain the situations within the local context,
providing a mine of carefully selected and very informative observations,
with much thought and consideration for the Burmese themselves.
(Bangkok, 2003) First Published 1860
359 pp., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
THOUSAND MILES ON AN ELEPHANT IN THE SHAN STATES
by Hallet, Holt S.
Book order code : E 21243
This text presents an excellent overview of the topography, economy,
peoples, customs, legends and local histories of Northern Thailand in
the latter part of the nineteenth century. Consequently, it is immensely
valuable to anyone interested in the area and has long been recognized
for its merit by scholars. The book, first published in 1890, resulted
from Hallet's thorough fact-finding mission through the region in 1876
when he was searching for the best route for a railway by which British
goods could be transported from Burma to Thailand, and more importantly,
to China. The information which he carefully compiled makes this book
an important reference source even today.
(Bangkok 2000; repr. from 1890) ISBN 974-8495-27-2
532 pp., illus., 8 maps, 150 x 210 mm
THE MONS OF BURMA AND THAILAND
Vol 1. The Talangs
by Halliday, Robert
Book order code : E 22119
This is a two-volume selection of his most important writings on the
subject. Volume 1 is a reprint of his monograph, The Talaings, which
was originally published in 1917 in Rangoon. Well over thirteen centuries
ago the Mons established the earliest Buddhist civilization on the Southeast
Asian mainland, and it was through them the Burmese and Northern Thais
received not only their script, along with literary and technical texts,
but also adopted their indigenous religious practices and administrative
systems. Halliday's assumptions about the important historical role
played by the Mons, reflecting the views of C. O. Blagden, with whom
he collaborated, have been vindicated in the 1960s following the discoveries
of early archeological sites and epigraphic data in Thailand. Therefore,
Halliday's work is a unique source on Mon culture and village life at
the beginning of the twentieth century. Halliday's historical photographs,
incorporated in Volume 1, are complemented by photos by Christian Bauer,
the editor, taken in Burma and Thailand, presented in Volume 2.
(Bangkok 2000; repr. from 1917) ISBN 974-7534-20-7
236 pp., 12 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
MONS OF BURMA AND THAILAND
: Vol. 2 Selected Articles
by Halliday, Robert
Book order code : E 22120
Volume 2 features all of Halliday's articles published in the Journal
of the Burma Research Society as well as his two other monographs, A
History of Kings (1923), and The Story of the Founding of Pegu (1923).
This volume also has photographs by Christian Bauer, the editor of this
volume of reprints.
(Bangkok 2000; repr. from 1923) ISBN 974-7534-19-4
340 pp., 8 pp. color illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
JOURNEY THROUGH THE MERGUI ARCHIPELAGO
by Ivanoff, Jacques and Thierry Lejard
Book order code : E 22292
Mergui Archipelago Project made five expeditions between 1998 and 2001.
They resulted in the rediscovery of one of the most beautiful places
on earth which had been isolated for many years. A cooperative and scientific
project had been set up to promote the local heritage, nomad culture
and the Burmese historical and cultural inheritance. The reader will
discover ancient rock paintings, the archeological landmarks of the
Indian world on its way to Southeast Asia, the colorful history of the
region since the first arrival of the Westerners; he will also share
the Moken nomads way of life.
(Bangkok, 2001) ISBN 974-4800-06-2
246 pp., 6 pp illus., 60 pp. in col., 6 maps, 22 pp. in co., 210 x 290
Sea Gypsies of the Andaman Sea
by Ivanoff, Jacques
Book order code : E 21813
The book contains accounts of the nomads who live in the Mergui Archipelago
of southern Burma and adjacent Thai territories. This minority of the
northern branch of the Austronesian peoples have a very distinctive
and peculiar culture. Most of the year they live on their boats but
do not fish. During the rainy season they live on land, grow some plants,
but are not avid cultivators and make little use of their agricultural
produce. They developed a strong cultural identity but are nevertheless
adapting to a changing environment. For outsiders, the functioning
of their society is difficult to understand and still has its mysteries.
The closing of Burma after 1948 prevented further research. These post-war
chronicles, supplemented by a host of rare photographs, shed some light
on this unique group deserving of a special place in the pantheon of
(Bangkok 1997) ISBN 974-8496-65-1
170 pp., illus. with 83 plates, 24 pp. in color, 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
THE MOKEN BOAT
: Symbolic technology
by Ivanoff, Jacques
Book order code : E 22075
This is the first comprehensive study of the boats of the sea-gypsies
of the Andaman Sea from Surin Island in Southern Thailand to Ross Island
in Burma. The traditional Moken boat has been a cause of wonder for
scholars, English administrators, and sea captains. How could such a
remote and "uncivilized" people have developed such impressive
naval technology? The discrepancy between the level of culture and the
high degree of technical skill in boat building is not surprising if
we look deep inside the nomadic ideology of the Moken: their techniques
cannot be understood without reference to their cultural and symbolic
contexts. This study provides all the necessary technical tools and
symbolic knowledge to understand how the sea-gypsies still survive today
in their amazing boat, the kabang. This book also provides an English-French
glossary of marine terms and techniques, a glossary of Moken marine
technology, and a glossary identifying plants based on an extensive
survey of the flora of the region where the Moken live.
(Bangkok 1999) ISBN 974-8434-90-7
180 pp., fully illus., partly in color, 210 x 290 mm, pbk.
RINGS OF CORAL
: Moken Folktales
by Ivanoff, Jacques
Book order code : E 22226
This is the first compilation of the oral literature of the Moken,
the sea gypsies of the Andaman Sea. Virtually unknown to scholars, except
for a few collected in 1838 by Hugo Barnetzik, the 44 stories presented
here, of a total of 100, were specially revealed by the Moken to Jaques
Ivanoff, the foremost scholar on the Moken, who has here retold and
analyzed them. The stories deal with the Mokens' historical roots, the
creation of Moken society and its flourishing; folk tales, myths and
spirit songs. These stories are essential to understand the Moken society
and their survival until now, in an ecological and cultural niche. Additional
stories recorded by observers are also listed.
(Bangkok 2001) ISBN 974-7534-71-1
478 pp., 8 pp. color illus., 11 pp. maps+charts, 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
BURMESE BUDDHIST SCULPTURE
: The Johan Möger Collection
by Karow, Otto
Book order code : E 21481
This Offers the reader an admirable survey and description of a sacral art that is yet too little studied, the rich Burmese tradition. Of particular importance in this collection are the pieces forged in the Shan States depicting various incidents in the life of the Buddha as well as the many pieces representing the Buddha in royal attire, herein designated the “Jambupati”-type. Whether the artifacts displayed are of narrative scenes, single figures, votive stupas, or house temples we have in this collection the full range of craftsmanship expressing, in various “gradients of quality”, Burmese Buddhist iconographic ideals.
(Bangkok, 2003) Bar Code 978-974-8495-53-8
168 pp., illus, in col. 210 x 290 mm,pbk
by Kin Oung
Book order code : E 21626
(Second Expanded Edition)
This book provides a graphic reconstruction of a controversial episode
in Burmese history: the murder of U Aung San and his six ministerial
colleagues on 19 July 1947. The course of Burmese history could well
have been very different if Aung San had lived to become independent
Burma's first prime minister. Based on eye-witness accounts, this book
sheds much new light on the events of this period. The facts of the
killing itself seem relatively straightforward, and are documented in
the records of the assassins' trial, but there remain many unanswered
questions: Who really stood to benefit from the death of Aung San? Was
there a mastermind, or masterminds, other than U Saw (who was convicted
of the murder) behind the plot? If so, who were these shadowy figures,
and how were they able to escape? It is the author's investigation of
these issues that gives the book its particular value. Kin Oung is especially
well qualified to write this account for he has family connections that
provide a direct link with the events of the late 1940s. His late father,
Major-General Tun Hla Oung of Burma's Imperial Police, and his late
father-in-law, Justice Thaung Sein, played vital roles in bringing to
justice the assassins of Aung San. It was the reminiscences of his father-in-law,
with their implication that events might not have been all they appeared
to be, that triggered Kin Oung's interest in this tragic episode of
(Bangkok 1996) ISBN 974-9496-48-6
160 pp., 8 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm
A THOUSAND LIVES AWAY
: Buddhism in Contemporary Burma
by King, Winston L.
Book order code : I 5241
The portrait presented here is essentially that of Burmese Buddhism
"on the hoof," as it is practiced by the rank and file of
lay Buddhists, mirroring the world as perceived through traditionalist
Buddhist eyes. For the most part it is a strange world to Western perceptions-one
almost from another planet, one "a thousand lives away" from
it, one of karma, endless rebirths, nats and pagodas.
(Berkeley 1964, repr. from 1989)
238 pp., 140 x 215 mm, pbk
DEVELOPMENT AND REFORMS IN MYANMAR
: Asean and Japanese Perspectives
by Kiryu, Minoru (Ed.)
Book order code : E 22113
This report incorporates papers and research reports prepared in the
framework of the Symposium on Industrial Reform in Myanmar, sponsored
by the Sasakawa Southeast Asia Cooperation Fund. Over a period of two
years, researchers from Japan, Myanmar, and Thailand pursued three objectives,
reflected in the results reported here:
To make a comprehensive examination of the problems that Myanmar's enterprises
face as the country makes its transition to a market-oriented economy.
To gain knowledge of current problems relative to Myanmar's enterprises
through conducting research and holding symposia for researchers and
policymakers both in and outside Myanmar.
To prepare policy recommendations for submission to the Government of
Myanmar based on the results of these processes, in an effort to aid
in its task of reforming the nation's industrial policies.
Thus, a wealth of hitherto unavailable information has been collected
and is presented in this volume for the first time.
(Bangkok 1999) ISBN 974-7534-06-1
345 pp., illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
SAN SUU KYI AND BURMA'S UNFINISHED RENAISSANCE
by Lintner, Bertil
US$ 7.50, 10 copies US$ 35.00
Book order code : E 21464
A brief introduction to Aung San Suu Kyi's role in Burma's political
scene in the late 1980's. This edition was printed after she received
the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize.
(Bangkok 1991; 2nd ed.) ISBN 974-8495-61-2
32 pp., 4 pp. illus., 140 x 215 mm, pbk.
OIL IN BURMA
The Extraction of "Earth-Oil" to 1914
by Longmuir, Marilyn V.
Book order code : E 22227
This study describes the early indigenous hand-dug wells near Yenangyaung
(creek of stinking water) and the subsequent chain of events which,
by the early 1900s, turned Burma's oil fields into "a matter of
great Imperial importance" for the British Government. The allure
of these oil fields attracted not only the twinza (Burmese oil miners),
but a cash-strapped Burmese King, tenacious Scottish oil men and investors,
predatory oil companies and last but not least, canny and foolish speculators.
(Bangkok 2001) ISBN 974-7534-60-6
350 pp., 8 pp. color illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
DREAMS, MALARIA NIGHTS
: Burma's Civil war
by MacDonald, Martin
Book order code : E 22107
This daring book, the most accessible contemporary account of Burma's
civil war, unravels a complex story that encompasses more than a dozen
armies, scores of ethnic groups, involves the opium warlords of the
Golden Triangle, and the rise of the democracy movement inside Burma.
For the last 50 years Burma has been torn apart by political and ethnic
insurgencies, shut off from the outside world, and forgotten. Today
the country is ruled, as it has been since 1962, by a brutal, corrupt,
and incompetent military dictatorship. The author, a freelance journalist,
made his first trip into insurgent Burma in 1989. Since then he has
travelled extensively, both alone and with insurgent groups, including
an overland trip in the company of Karen and Burmese student soldiers
to the Andaman Sea, a clandestine boat trip down the Irrawaddy River,
a jungle trek in search of rhinos, and an attempt to photograph Burmese
slave-labor camps. This fast-paced and personal narrative captures both
the romance and harsh reality of an ill-fated revolution. The plight
of the Karen, an ethnic group fighting for a homeland in the malaria-stricken
mountains of southeastern Burma, is especially poignant. The old Karen
veterans, who served under the British during World War II and began
the present rebellion in 1949, together with two subsequent generations,
are still in the jungle, but now forced into refugee camps and ever-shrinking
parcels of Karen-held territory along the Thai-Burma border.
(Bangkok 1999) ISBN 974-8434-61-3
234 pp., 2 maps, 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
KAREN PEOPLE OF BURMA
: A Study in Anthropology and Ethnology
by Marshall, Harry Ignatius
Book order code : E 21934
A classical anthropological monograph written at a time when it was
expected that there should be at least one book on each "tribe",
and for sometime this was considered the one book on the Karen. It is
full of data and, ironically, this book is still the most recent general
description of basically all aspects of Karen culture in Burma. Since
it was written 75 years ago there are evidently many current questions
which the book cannot answer. But it is still a significant ethnographic
study which has been widely read and widely quoted.
(Bangkok 1997; repr. from 1922)
350 pp., 140 x 210 mm, pbk.
EPILOGUE IN BURMA 1945-1948
: The Military Dimensions of British Withdrawal
by McEnery, John H.
Book order code : E 22180
This book presents the first fully-researched account of the Army's
dramatic role in war-torn Burma from Japanese surrender to final evacuation.
It presents the achievements of the British, African, Indian Army and
Burma Army units of Burma Command. The most important of these was the
suppression in February-April 1947 of an incipient "dacoit dictatorship"
in central Burma aimed at subverting the moderate government of Aung
San, the Burman national hero. The book also records what happened to
the losers, the 70,000 surrendered Japanese troops. Beyond that, new
light is thrown on the tragic assassinations of Aung San and most of
his ministerial colleagues in July 1947, absolving the British authorities
and HQ Burma Command of any vestige of responsibility or blame.
The work sets out an accurate statement of force levels in Burma in
1945-48. In so doing it discredits the lamentably false picture presented
by the HM Stationery Office official history, Burma-The Struggle for
Independence 1944-1948. Using a hitherto unpublished and revealing Top
Secret document, the author gives a badly-needed re-appraisal of the
last two British Governors of Burma. Finally General Briggs, the General
Officer Commanding, emerges as the unsung hero whose quiet determination
avoided a Vietnam in Burma. This account of a peaceful transfer of power
in difficult and dangerous circumstances may help a new generation in
Burma on their hard road to democracy and national reconciliation. It
is an absorbing and long-overdue tribute to the men and women who served
in the armed forces of the Crown in post-war Burma.
(Bangkok 2000, repr. of 1990) ISBN 974-7534-45-2
158 pp., 8 pp. illus., 3 maps, 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
THE HOME OF AN EASTERN CLAN
: A Study of the Palaungs of the Shan States
by Milne, Leslie
Book Order Code : E 22 412
This is a detailed study on all aspects of life and culture of the Palaungs of the Shan States. This study, which was researched in the 1910s and published in 1924, deals for the most part with the Katur tribe of the Palaungs. They live in or near Namhsan, the capital of Tawngpeng, which was nominally a Shan State but which was governed by a Palaung chief then, and inhabited almost entirely by Palaungs. The Palaungs are a Mon-Khmer speaking group (as are the Lamet in Laos). Since her first encounters with the Palaungs in 1906–1908 the author learned the language of the main dialect spoken in Namhsan. This scarce book is still one of the main studies on the subject and covers chapters on babies, young girls and boys, young men and maidens, marriage, the dwelling and home life, village life, medicine, customs on child birth and death, religion and cosmology, and some details on proverbs and folktales – from a female perspective.
(Bangkok 2004, repr. from 1924) Bar code 978-974-4800-56-5
452 pp., 17 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
SHANS AT HOME
: Burma's Shan States in the Early 1900s
by Milne, Leslie
Book order code : E 22171
This reprint offers a colorful account of the Shan States, where the
author, Mrs. Leslie Milne, lived from 1906-1907, six months in Hsipaw
and then fifteen months in the Namkham valley of the Shweli River. For
most of the time she was the only foreign resident; being a member of
the Royal Asiatic Society and Bombay Natural History Society no doubt
prepared her to live the life of an explorer to the full. She studied
most aspects of Shan life, particularly family life, illustrating her
observations with a host of remarkable photos. Language, folklore, villagers
at work, crafts, medicine and charms, Shan cosmology, are all discussed
in lively anecdotes, peppered with astute observations. Blessed with
such a keen interest in all that crosses her path, she happily sprinkles
her account with critical remarks about this simple life, and of the
British for their failure to cash in on their empire building. Her passion
for textiles and her other preferred pastime-natural history-led her
to record natural dyes and products, and nature in general, noting that
both were already losing out, albeit to German rather than British traders.
The book is enhanced by two chapters on the history and literature of
the Shan States by the Reverend Wilbur Willis Cochrane.
(Bangkok 2000; repr. from 1910) ISBN 974-7534-26-6
384 pp., 72 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
: Burmese Art and Architecture
by Moilanen, Irene & Sergey Ozhegov
Book order code : E 22079
This overview presents the traditional art of wood carving and use of
wood in building in Burma from a historical perspective. In the early
Burmese context the wood carvers' art was honed for religious purposes:
to create sculptures to venerate the Buddha. These and other woodcarving
motifs of decorative and legendary nature evolved but maintained continuity
to the present time despite loss in the 1300-1700 era due to disruptive
events in the country. The numerous illustrations of this art also show
the colonial influences and recent adaptations to the tourist souvenir
market, a potential threat to maintaining traditional wood-carving skills.
These are described in detail, including materials and techniques, accompanied
with illustrations. The use of wood in building also has its traditions
in form and beliefs and a basis in functional use and mobility: a basic
room is replicated and adapted in the specific contexts of dwelling,
monastery, and palace. All these designs are illustrated with floor
plans and photographs. Again, in architecture modern design requirements,
materials, urbanization and utility challenge the preservation of traditional
methods and forms, many of which may well be more suited for local use.
(Bangkok 1999) ISBN 974-7534-00-2
186 pp., 76 pp. illus., partly in color, 210 x 290 mm, pbk.
AND OTHER CITIES OF THE PAST IN BURMA
by O'Connor, V. C. Scott
Book order code : E 21067
First published in 1907, this book is still an important source of information
for all who are curious about this fascinating country which has only
recently begun the process of change. V. C. Scott O'Connor served in
Burma at the turn of the century as a British colonial officer. His
extensive travels took him to numerous cities, all of which had had
a great influence on Burmese history, art and culture. From his experiences,
the author recreates Burmese history through that of important early
cities. Mandalay, for which he had a special affection, Sagaing, Ava,
Amarapura, Pagan, Pegu, Prome, Thare-kettaya (Sri-kshetra), Mergui,
Tagoung, and the monastery complex at Po-u-daung. The work includes
243 illustrations, mostly photos, reproductions of paintings by the
traditionalist Burmese painter, Saya Chone, and maps and diagrams.
(Bangkok 1996; repr. from 1907) ISBN 974-8495-17-5
470 pp., fully illus., 8 pp. in color, 4 folded maps+plans, 150 x
210 mm, pbk.
PENTAGONAL MONUMENTS OF PAGAN
by Pichard, Pierre
Book order code : E 21469
These monuments are exceptional in the ancient architecture of Southeast
Asia and are indeed rare in the whole history of architecture. This
original study by Pierre Richard, architect and member of the École
française d'Extrême Orient, presents 17 monuments, discussing
the doctrinal, historical, and architectural features of these unique
achievements of Burmese genius.
(Bangkok 1991) ISBN 974-8495-49-3
157 pp., fully illus., 210 x 295 mm
BURMA AND THE KARENS
by Po, San C.
Book order code : E 22243
A reprint of the original 1928 publication which "set out to present
and explain to the reading public and those who are in authority, the
condition of the Karens, the position they occupy and their aspiration
as a nation...". The historian Martin Smith considers the author
to be the "father" of the Karen people, and he is described
by Harry Marshall (author of The Karen People of Burma) as perhaps the
most prominent Karen. The extensive introduction by Christina Fink provides
a full historical background and insight into the far-sightedness of
the author, helping to understand the ongoing struggle of the Karen
and possibly its solution
(Bangkok, 2002)ISBN 974-7534-82-7
168 pp., 24 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
GOLDEN BOY and Other Stories from Burma
by Saw Wai Lwin Moe
Book order code : E 22228
This collection presents 27 folktales, fables and legends told by Burmese
people to their children. The magic of legends, wisdom contained in
ancient tales and the humour of fables captivates young and old alike.
Besides providing good entertainment these stories reveal a lot about
the daily life of the people who told them, about their inner-most beliefs
and the eternal values of a people. What could be a better way to the
heart of a culture than its ancient tales? We invite you to follow the
path of the Burmese people.
(Bangkok 2001) ISBN 974-7534-65-7
112 pp., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
THE CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS
Living in a Borderland
by Schendel, Willem van, Wolfgang Mey & Aditya Kumar Dewan
Book order code : E 22081
This work examines the borderland between Burma, India and Bangladesh,
inhabited by twelve distinct ethnic groups with strong cultural and
linguistic links with Southeast Asia. The three specialist authors of
this unique book have assembled more than 400 mostly unpublished photographs,
many in color, from over 50 private collections. The Chittagong Hill
Tracts: Living in a Borderland introduces the reader to the remarkable
cultural variety and modern transformations of this virtually unknown
region bridging Southeast Asia and South Asia. At the same time it explores
how, from the 1860s to the late twentieth century, photographers have
portrayed the Chittagong Hill Tracts and their inhabitants. These photographers
were both outsiders (travellers, officials, missionaries, anthropologists,
development workers) and local people capturing their own world as they
saw it. The 20 carefully documented chapters include: Creating a Colonial
Aristocracy, The Public Display of Power, Images of Nature and Destruction,
Religions of the Hills, Bodies and Costumes, Developing the Hills, and
Lifestyles. The Chittagong Hill Tracts is the first comprehensive work
on this complex region of Asia.
(Bangkok 2000) ISBN 974-8434-98-2
336 pp., 144 pp. illus., partly in color, 210 x 290 mm, pbk.
THE DISORDER IN ORDER
: the Army-State in Burma since 1962
by Seekins, Donald M
Book order code : E 22279
The book examines Burma's history of "regime entropy" following
the March 1962 coup d'etat which ended the country's brief experiment
with parliamentary government. Implementing socialist economic policies
in central Burma and a hard line against ethnic and communist insurgents
in the Border Areas, Ne Win's Army-State presided over the country's
fall from prosperity to Least Developed Nation status by 1987. '[he
following year, a new martial law regime, the State Law and Order Restoration
Council (SLORC), brutally suppressed a nationwide movement for democracy
that drew on the country's colonial-era traditions of revolutionary
nationalism. Although SLORC promoted an open economy, including the reign
private investment, the second Army-State operates on the same assumptions
as its predecessor: that government is synonymous with pacification,
unquestioned central control and cultural homogenization. The author
argues that while the post-1988 junta, renamed the State Peace and Development
Council in November 1997, claims a unique mission in defending national
unity and social order, its policies generate political disunity and
socio-economic disorder. Tragically, genuine order, the key to Burma's
development, remains out of reach as the 2lth century dawns.
(Bangkok, 2002)ISBN 974-7534-96-7
423 pp., 8 pp. illus. in col., 150 x 220 mm, pbk.
by Stewart, A.T.Q.
Book order code : E 22352
This book records the British attack on upper Burma. In
November 1885 10,000 British and Indian troops were transported up the
Irrawaddy in steamers of the Flotilla Company. After a few skirmishes
they occupied Mandalay and deposed King Thibaw and Queen Supayalat,
who were sent into exile in India. Upper Burma was then annexed to the
British Empire. Why did it bring only discredit on the soldiers who
carried it out? Strangely enough, some of the answers to these questions
are to be found in Ireland. For the leading figures in this Burmese
drama were almost all Irishmen, from the Viceroy of India, Lord Dufferin,
to the special correspondent of The Times. Edward Moylan, who pursued
a personal vendetta against the British administration in Burma. Dr.
Stewart has based his fascinating account of the Mandalay campaign on
Lord Dufferin's vice regal correspondence and on sources in the India
Office Records and Library.
(Bangkok 2003) ISBN 974-4800-40-2
223 pp., 13 illus. back & white, 2 maps, 150 x210 mm, pbk.
: A Young Chindit Survives the Jungle and Japanese Captivity
by Stibbe, Philip G.
Book order code : E 21816
The story of the Chindits, and how Wingate was able to forge out of
this heterogeneous collection of men a fighting force which became and
has remained one of the legends of the Second World War. Stibbe vividly
describes the training of this ill-assorted bunch for the first Chindit
expedition and the way in which Wingate prepared them for the ordeals
ahead. Alas, as with so many of the best-laid plans, things went awry
and Stibbe ended up a prisoner of the Japanese, incarcerated in a goal
in Rangoon. How he managed to survive the appalling sadism of his captors
in the following years is even more extraordinary. His account of his
time in prison vividly conveys the lowest depths of man's inhumanity
to fellow man, and the will of man to survive under the gravest of circumstances.
(London, Bangkok 1995) ISBN 974-8496-47-3
231 pp., 8 pp. illus., 1 pp. map, 155 x 235 mm, pbk.
by Toke Gale
Book order code : I 5206
This book deals with very intimate accounts of the behavior of these
animals, their sexual life, their "loves and frequent lapses from
virtue, their infidelities, hatreds and jealousies." It is also
interlaced with superstitious practices which a few simple, hard working
jungle folk observe in dealing with capturing and training wild elephants.
It is the first time this topic has been written about at length and
the book makes very interesting and delightful reading. The story of
the only white elephant of Burma is most fascinating.
(Rangoon, no date; printed in Singapore)
162 pp., with text illus., 145 x 210 mm
by Tucker, Shelby
Book order code : E 22179
This book describes a remarkable and perilous journey into a terra incognita.
Shelby Tucker entered the Shan State of Burma through a border area
of China closed to foreigners, crossed the Kachin Hills and left Burma
via an area of India closed to foreigners. He was detained by communist
rebels, handed over to Kachin rebels and arrested by the Indian army.
But Among Insurgents is more than an extraordinary adventure story.
It describes the Kachins, the most important of Burma's "hidden
colonies", of whom very little has been written, offers a brief
and readable analysis of the Burmese civil war, including its ethnic
and religious dimensions, and examines the symbiotic relationship between
the civil war and the international drugs trade. Shelby Tucker interviewed
poppy farmers and leaders on both sides of the narcotics divide, and
his report to the US National Security Council may have contributed
to Washington's changed perception of the Burma Army as the main player
in the trade. This book is a necessary supplement to Bertil Lintner's
Land of Jade, first published in 1990.
(London, Bangkok 2000) ISBN 974-7534-65-7
428 pp., 17 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
A GENERAL AND AN ARMY IN BURMA
by U Thaung
Book order code : E 21811
The author tells the chilling story of a people under military rule.
As a Burmese journalist, the author worked under martial law and was
jailed by the cunning and ruthless General Ne Win, Burma's dictator.
This is the chronicle of the stupidity and crimes of the Burmese Army
and, from an insider's viewpoint, the misery and cruelties endured by
43 million enslaved Burmese people.
(Bangkok 1995) ISBN 974-8496-44-9
150 pp., 130 x 200 mm, pbk.
SEA GYPSIES OF MALAYA
by White, Walter Grainge
Book order code : E 21935
This book is considered a classic amongst the sparse Moken ethnographic
literature. The author was a man with an inquiring mind, full of curiosity,
who wished to go beyond the limits of his missionary tasks and relate
the story of his personal and research experiences among the sea nomads.
The book's most important merit was to reveal the life of the Moken
at the beginning of the century. It does this in a very vivid manner.
Published in 1922 it sums up the author's fieldwork observations dating
from 1911. He writes about the administrative and political structure
of Tenasserim (he was responsible for the population census of the Moken),
which was the first part of Burma to be surrendered to the British after
the Anglo-Burmese war of 1824-1826. His book enables us, on the one
hand, to become aware of the nature, fauna and flora of this region,
and on the other, the human intrigues involving the English, Indians,
Karen, Mons, Malays, Burmese and, of course, the Moken. We become vividly
aware, though his writings, of contemporary western arrogance and the
developing phenomenon of colonial administration and the ways in which
it exploited indigenous wealth. The missionaries, administration, cartographers,
geographers and the military were able, long before the ethnologists,
to engage in all kinds of work which attracts the interest of present
investigators: reports, mapping, census, dictionaries. These are precious
instruments for observers of small, non-literate societies.
(Bangkok 1997; repr. from 1922) ISBN 974-8496-92-9
350 pp., 15 pp. illus., 1 folded map, 150 x 210 mm, pbk.
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