New archaeology books on Select

New Southeast Asian archaeology-related books from Select Books, added in May 2007. Other books also available in the bookstore.

Here are the May 2007 additions to the catalogue of Select Books, a specialised publisher and retailer of books pertaining to Southeast Asia. For ordering info, please visit the Select Books website. You may also want to visit the SEAArch bookstore for other books on southeast asian archaeology.

041416
Historical Dictionary Of Ancient Southeast Asia (Historical Dictionaries Of Ancient Civilizations And Historical Eras, No. 18). Miksic, John N.. Us. 2007. 497pp. hc $229.45 (Anyone who has seen the stunning ruins at Angkor, Bagan, and Borobudur will readily understand why Southeast Asia is the host of so many United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization World Heritage Sites. As beautiful as the spiralling towers, intricate carvings, and delicate bas-reliefs adorning these monuments are, however, they just barely scratch the surface of the immense historical and cultural heritage of the region. Covering the countries of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam during the period from the first to the 15th century, the Historical Dictionary of Ancient Southeast Asia helps us comprehend the vast and complex history of the region through a chronology, a glossary, a bibliography, an introduction, appendixes, maps, photographs, diagrams, and hundreds of cross-referenced dictionary entries on the major (and many minor) sites, the more significant historical figures, the kingdoms they ruled over, the economic and social relations between them, and the artistic, cultural, and religious context.)

039600
Legacy Of The Barang People, The: An Exploration Into The Puzzling Similarities Of The Hungarian And Malay Languages. Busztin, György. Sg. 2006. 118pp. pb $28.75 (This groundbreaking and tentative piece of research and speculation deals with the many apparent linkages between Malay and the Hungarian/Magyar languages which were spoken some 3000 years ago in Central Asia. Some established theories of language development are overviewed. What is known of the early history and prehistory of population movements in Eurasia is summarised. With bibliography and charts.)

040024
Sakyans Of South-East Asia, The: An Introspection Or Tracing Roots. Talukdar, S. P..In. 2006. 256pp. hc $31.00 (The Buddha, Prince Siddharta, was born a Sakya in the 5th century BCE. This genealogical line has continued into numerous ethnic groups in Southeast Asia. In this highly individual study, ideas, myths and facts related to the origins and history of the Sakyan people are set out and discussed.)

041162
Bayon Of Angkor Thom, The (Special Order Item). Sahai, Sachchidanand. Th. 2007. 146pp. pb $60.00 (This is an in-depth analysis of the Bayon of Angkor Thom, a monument which may hold the key to the understanding of the Khmer civilisation. The Bayon’s role as the geometric centre of the city of Angkor Thom and as a veritable microcosm of the Khmer world is explained in this monograph, which is based on notes that the author had been collecting from Sanskrit and Khmer epigraphic sources and French scholarly writings for over 40 years. He unveils the Bayon’s layout and architectural features, examines the reconstitution of its central image from innumerable fragments, and the enigma of its colossal face-towers. He also follows various theories about the monument and questions certain scientific descriptions. With plans, references, index and numerous black-and-white and colour photographs.)

037576
Diamond Book Of Hindu Gods And Goddesses, The: Their Hierarchy And Other Holy Things. Mathur, Suresh Narain; B. K. Chaturvedi. In. 2005. 77pp. hc $31.00 (Hindu mythology is a rich store of stories about supernatural personalities and events, written and re-written by scholars over thousands of years. It can prove incoherent and confusing to the general reader. This illustrated treatise attempts to put much of the popular available information in a nutshell and in accessible language. This book also pays attention to other aspects of Hinduism such as Hindu beliefs, sanskars, idolized saints, the cosmic cycle, mythological events, the Hindu calendar and more.)

041139
Austronesian Diaspora And The Ethnogeneses Of People In The Indonesian Archipelago Proceedings Of The International Symposium. Simanjuntak, Truman; I. H.E. Pojoh et al (eds.). Id. 2006. 438pp. pb $47.00 (The dispersal of the Austronesian diaspora was wide, stretching from Madagascar to Easter Island, and from Taiwan and Micronesia to New Zealand, including Indonesia. Austronesia is the root of the recent culture, history, and ethnogeneses of the Indonesian peoples. For this reason, the first international symposium on this subject was held in Solo from 28 June to 1 July 2005. The proceedings are presented in this book, which contains four main sections: an introduction; the environmental background; the Austronesian origin, dispersal and ethnogeneses; and the Austronesian language today. The 28 papers and abstracts submitted by Indonesian and foreign specialists discuss new findings and insights about Austronesian studies from the perspectives of paleoclimatology, paleogeography, paleoanthropology, anthropology, genetics, archaeology, and linguistics. While a large majority of the contributions address the question of the Austronesian in Indonesia, five of them discuss the Austronesian on the islands of Southeast Asia, in Borneo, in Singapore, in Malaysia and in the Philippines. With references and illustrations.)

041323
Tanah Tujuh: Close Encounters With The Temuan Mythos. Antares. My. 2007. 208pp. pb $24.15 (The traditional ways of life of Malaysia’s Orang Asli (aborigine) people are fast disappearing. This is a retelling of some of the tales and myths of the Temuan Orang Asli people of Ulu Selangor, one of the 18 surviving tribal groups of Peninsular Malaysia. The author’s ongoing friendship with the tribe enables him to share the fears and upheavals by which modern economic policies is destroying the Temuan’s future and way of life. With graphics, black-and-white photographs, Temuan glossary, bibliography and index.)

040297
Dictionary Of South & Southeast Asian Art. Chaturachinda, Gwyneth; S. Krishnamurty et al. In. 2006. 240pp. pb $18.00 (2006 second edition of the 2004 dictionary of more than 1300 terms used in the art and architecture of South and Southeast Asia, and in the region’s history, religion and mythology. With line illustrations, chronology of the region, reading list and addresses of major museums.)

041201
Icons Of Art: The Collection Of The National Museum Of Indonesia. Miksic, John; Joop Avé (eds.). Id. 2007. 308pp. hc $78.75 (The origins of the National Museum of Indonesia can be traced back to 1778 and many of the thousands of artefacts in its collections have never been exhibited. Finely illustrated specialist articles indicate the magnificence of the collections. They describe: the evolution of the National Museum; the collections of three centuries; statuary and inscriptions; heirlooms; cloths; porcelain and terra cotta; theatre and masks; glorious metals; and future trends and possibilities. The volume will prove a treasure house for anyone interested in the art or history of Southeast Asia. With bibliography and the Museum’s timeline.)

040487
Secrets Of Southeast Asian Textiles, The: Myths, Status And The Supernatural. Puranananda, Jane (ed.). Th. 2007. 215pp. pb $94.50 (Throughout Asia, textiles have played an important role in concepts of power and kingship and are also closely associated with shamanistic, Buddhist and Islamic beliefs. The 15 papers presented in this work represent the scholarship and research of leading scholars from around the world who participated in The James H. W. Thompson Foundation symposium, Status, Myth and the Supernatural – Unraveling the Secrets of Southeast Asian Textiles, which was held in Bangkok, August 2005. The papers are fully supported by colour illustrations and they discuss: the comparisons between Bhutanese and Southeast Asian textiles; Cambodian textile hangings; Indian figurative textiles in Indonesia; barkcloth skirts in Borneo; talismanic textiles in Islamic Southeast Asia; shamanistic practices among the Shan; the textiles of the Chin, the Naga and the Mon of Burma; Lao women’s dress; monks’ robes in Thailand; the use of the pha sin to wrap Siamese holy manuscripts; royal brocades in the Siamese Court; textile motifs as indicators of status and religion among the Tai of Vietnam.)

Author: Noel Tan

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at SEAMEO-SPAFA, the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Archaelogy and Fine Arts.

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