This collaborative collection […] makes an important and timely contribution to discussions about Myanmar’s changing legal and political landscape. Everyday Justice in Myanmar foregrounds the perspectives and experiences of local communities in accessing and practicing justice, effectively highlighting the diversity of politico-legal orders in Myanmar […]

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Continue ReadingThis collaborative collection […] makes an important and timely contribution to discussions about Myanmar’s changing legal and political landscape. Everyday Justice in Myanmar foregrounds the perspectives and experiences of local communities in accessing and practicing justice, effectively highlighting the diversity of politico-legal orders in Myanmar […]

The book deftly presents its findings with humility about what has evaded understanding. It situates legal consciousness in Myanmar in all its complexities, continuities and polarities, as poised between acknowledgement, avoidance and abandonment. It will without question become a reference point on understanding legal pluralism in Myanmar and possibly beyond.

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Continue ReadingThe book deftly presents its findings with humility about what has evaded understanding. It situates legal consciousness in Myanmar in all its complexities, continuities and polarities, as poised between acknowledgement, avoidance and abandonment. It will without question become a reference point on understanding legal pluralism in Myanmar and possibly beyond.

Drawing on extensive fieldwork and insights both sympathetic and astute, the authors of these essays make signal contributions to ritual studies, to queer studies, to Southeast Asian studies – and beyond. Their essays are as authoritative as deities would demand, and as fabulous as divas could wish.

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Continue ReadingDrawing on extensive fieldwork and insights both sympathetic and astute, the authors of these essays make signal contributions to ritual studies, to queer studies, to Southeast Asian studies – and beyond. Their essays are as authoritative as deities would demand, and as fabulous as divas could wish.

Deities and Divas is a remarkable achievement. By linking queer studies and religious studies, this volume’s contributors bring new insights to the study of Mainland Southeast Asia, transgenderism, and faith. Bringing together a range of disciplines and both historical and contemporary data from Myanmar and Thailand, this book will prove invaluable to all those interested in how ritual and queer experience intersect in the modern world. – Tom Boellstorff, University of California, Irvine Deities and Divas is the first volume to bring together two lines of inquiry and theorization that are usually kept strictly separate, namely queer studies and studies of spirit possession. The exciting insights at the intersection between sexuality and the spirit world offered in the eight empirical chapters and the superb Introduction promise to make a deep theoretical impact in both of these fields. … [T]his book will be highly relevant to people working on similar issues around the world.

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Continue ReadingDeities and Divas is a remarkable achievement. By linking queer studies and religious studies, this volume’s contributors bring new insights to the study of Mainland Southeast Asia, transgenderism, and faith. Bringing together a range of disciplines and both historical and contemporary data from Myanmar and Thailand, this book will prove invaluable to all those interested in how ritual and queer experience intersect in the modern world. – Tom Boellstorff, University of California, Irvine Deities and Divas is the first volume to bring together two lines of inquiry and theorization that are usually kept strictly separate, namely queer studies and studies of spirit possession. The exciting insights at the intersection between sexuality and the spirit world offered in the eight empirical chapters and the superb Introduction promise to make a deep theoretical impact in both of these fields. … [T]his book will be highly relevant to people working on similar issues around the world.

Throughout the years, I have seen many foreigners, mostly missionaries, try to engage with these children and depict their experiences accurately. But rarely do the results match up with the reality. In contrast, Bolotta’s research should be lauded for its attempt to capture and unpack their experiences with as much subtlety as possible.

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Continue ReadingThroughout the years, I have seen many foreigners, mostly missionaries, try to engage with these children and depict their experiences accurately. But rarely do the results match up with the reality. In contrast, Bolotta’s research should be lauded for its attempt to capture and unpack their experiences with as much subtlety as possible.

Considering the ongoing upheavals in Thai politics these days, it is hard to imagine a more timely publication than Thai Politics in Translation: Monarchy, Democracy and the Supra-constitution. … Six of the seven essays were originally written and published in Thai and, until now, had never been published in English. This is significant, as many of the concepts fundamental to understanding Thai conservatism in this era … have been elaborated mostly only in the Thai language. This makes it difficult for non-readers of Thai to trace the origins and developments of these concepts, which have become part of the common narrative of Thai conservatism in the 2020s. Having these fundamental works of Thai political thought translated into English is one of the book’s most important contributions.

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Continue ReadingConsidering the ongoing upheavals in Thai politics these days, it is hard to imagine a more timely publication than Thai Politics in Translation: Monarchy, Democracy and the Supra-constitution. … Six of the seven essays were originally written and published in Thai and, until now, had never been published in English. This is significant, as many of the concepts fundamental to understanding Thai conservatism in this era … have been elaborated mostly only in the Thai language. This makes it difficult for non-readers of Thai to trace the origins and developments of these concepts, which have become part of the common narrative of Thai conservatism in the 2020s. Having these fundamental works of Thai political thought translated into English is one of the book’s most important contributions.

The narrative is a mixture of impressive academic engagement with debates about ‘Thainess’, belonging, subject positions and inequality, and sometimes quite touching insight into the lives, identities and behaviour of the sixty or so youngsters with whom Bolotta spent several years, sharing almost inseparably their everyday moments and experiences … This qualitative research … reveals slum children not as a uniform and singular category of passive victims of marginalisation, lacking agency, hope and prospects, but as social chameleons who are creatively adept at adjusting their lives and their projected identities to the multiple circumstances and settings in which they find themselves … This book makes a most valuable contribution to Thai Studies and our understanding of the lives and life prospects of marginalised children.

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Continue ReadingThe narrative is a mixture of impressive academic engagement with debates about ‘Thainess’, belonging, subject positions and inequality, and sometimes quite touching insight into the lives, identities and behaviour of the sixty or so youngsters with whom Bolotta spent several years, sharing almost inseparably their everyday moments and experiences … This qualitative research … reveals slum children not as a uniform and singular category of passive victims of marginalisation, lacking agency, hope and prospects, but as social chameleons who are creatively adept at adjusting their lives and their projected identities to the multiple circumstances and settings in which they find themselves … This book makes a most valuable contribution to Thai Studies and our understanding of the lives and life prospects of marginalised children.

The book is unusual in that it looks at the wider contexts and struggles for change for those growing up poor in Thailand. Childhood in Thailand has tended to be seen through the lens of sexual exploitation and abuse by Westerners and Thai children seen as uniquely vulnerable to commercial sexual exploitation. While Bolotta never underplays the difficulties these children face, and their risk of multiple forms of exploitation, his book is ultimately a hopeful and uplifting one and the children emerge from its pages as resilient, resourceful agents of change, albeit ones negotiating a tough and challenging world, where freedom and success remain perilous. Bolotta paints a vivid picture of life in the poor, informal settings of Thailand.

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Continue ReadingThe book is unusual in that it looks at the wider contexts and struggles for change for those growing up poor in Thailand. Childhood in Thailand has tended to be seen through the lens of sexual exploitation and abuse by Westerners and Thai children seen as uniquely vulnerable to commercial sexual exploitation. While Bolotta never underplays the difficulties these children face, and their risk of multiple forms of exploitation, his book is ultimately a hopeful and uplifting one and the children emerge from its pages as resilient, resourceful agents of change, albeit ones negotiating a tough and challenging world, where freedom and success remain perilous. Bolotta paints a vivid picture of life in the poor, informal settings of Thailand.

The book’s greatest strength is its detailed, sensitive empirical recording of everyday politics and contours of religious change, demonstrating Roszko’s fluency in Vietnamese and depth of fieldwork immersion.

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Continue ReadingThe book’s greatest strength is its detailed, sensitive empirical recording of everyday politics and contours of religious change, demonstrating Roszko’s fluency in Vietnamese and depth of fieldwork immersion.

Roszko’s adroit weaving of these stories makes Fishers, Monks and Cadres a vibrant new work of Vietnamese anthropology as well as an eminently readable maritime ethnography. As the South China Sea becomes even more important geopolitically, works like Roszko’s Fishers, Monks and Cadres will help scholars understand the roles of local fisherfolk communities in determining their own lifestyles.

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Continue ReadingRoszko’s adroit weaving of these stories makes Fishers, Monks and Cadres a vibrant new work of Vietnamese anthropology as well as an eminently readable maritime ethnography. As the South China Sea becomes even more important geopolitically, works like Roszko’s Fishers, Monks and Cadres will help scholars understand the roles of local fisherfolk communities in determining their own lifestyles.