New book looks at Ayutthaya from its economy

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Bangkok Post, 16 April 2017: Silpaokorn University’s Prof Warangkana Nibhatsukit’s new book, “Ayutthaya History: Questions and Answers”. The book is in Thai.

Most people think of the Ayutthaya period in terms of its cultural heritage, but Warangkana Nibhatsukit’s latest book highlights the economic aspect of the ancient capital.

Source: The truth about Ayutthaya | Bangkok Post: news

PhD Scholarship: Collecting practices through Southeast Asian materials

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The British Museum and SOAS are jointly offering a PhD scholarship to study the history of collecting in Southeast Asia in the 19-20th centuries. A really interesting subject, but available only to UK/EU applicants. Deadline is 28 April 2015.

AHRC-funded project studentship in Department of Asia at the British Museum and the Department of History of Art and Archaeology at SOAS

The Department of Asia at the British Museum and the Department of History of Art and Archaeology at SOAS invite applications from suitably qualified UK/EU candidates for a full-time, 3-year Collaborative Doctoral Award funded by the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council on the subject of ‘Thick provenance: interactions between European and Southeast Asian collecting practices refracted through the lens of the mainland Southeast Asia material at the British Museum.’

The project is a critical and comparative history of collecting in mainland Southeast Asia in the 19th-20th centuries. It proposes to examine the biographies of the British Museum’s mainland Southeast Asian collections, comprising analysis of modes of object ownership, perceptions of value, and exchange practices with reference to accumulation of family heirlooms and communal palladia (sources of protection and legitimation), as well as diverse modes of object circulation.

The mainland Southeast Asian collections at the British Museum contain lowland Buddhist objects, lacquerware, weapons and knives, archaeological material, pipes, and coins and banknotes, which are largely well-catalogued. More extensive, however, is the body of highland ethnographic material, including textiles and objects of daily use, such as baskets, which have not been thoroughly catalogued or researched. These objects come from the wide panoply of peoples, from the Chin and Naga in the western areas to the Shan, Karenni and Lahu of the eastern and central ones, who live in the mountainous regions of Southeast Asia and are not confined by national borders. Little is known about how these objects were collected and used locally and regionally, the roles they played within their local communities, or the means by which they were collected and arrived at the British Museum. It is anticipated that the student will focus upon this latter body of material for the PhD in order to provide a better understanding of object usage and ownership within regional and group relations, as well as the interactions between Europeans and locals at the time of collection.

Details here.

Job opportunity: Lecturer in Southeast Asian history

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Murdoch University in Australia is looking for a lecturer in South East Asian History. Applications close 21 November 2014.

The School is seeking to appoint a Lecturer in Southeast Asian History who will make a significant contribution to teaching and research, and help implement the School of Arts’ strategy of embedding Asia-related expertise throughout the School. The successful candidate will have extensive in-country experience and will conduct research using sources in the vernacular. An interest in inter-disciplinary collaboration would be particularly welcome.

The successful candidate will be required to develop an active research programme, apply for nationally competitive grants, publish in international refereed journals, and supervise postgraduate students. Expectations are commensurate with level of appointment.

The successful candidate will have either a PhD or evidence of near completion of a doctoral degree. A high level of written and oral communication skills and recent experience in teaching at the undergraduate and postgraduate level are highly desirable.

See posting here.

Untangling myth and reality from Malaysia's history

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Besides the “startling” news about the origins of the human race, another stir over the history of Malaysia was raised last week when eminent Malaysian historian Professor Khoo Kay Khim declared that some of the characters and stories in Malaysia’s national historical narrative were probably mythical or did not actually exist. Among those figures was the warrior Hang Tuah and the Chinese princess Hang Li Po.

Sculpture of Hang Tuah at the Malaysian National History Museum, wikicommons image

Sculpture of Hang Tuah at the Malaysian National History Museum, wikicommons image


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Discover Jakarta's History

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29 August 2007 (Jakarta Post) – If you’re in the Indonesian capital this month, do take a stop over the Jakarta History Museum to discover the history of the city in this month-long exhibition. This article also gives a good overview on the history of Jakarta.

Jakarta Post, 29 Aug 2007

Museum visitors get chance to explore open history book
Mustaqim Adamrah

Most Jakartans have only a sketchy idea of the seminal events of their city’s history, which is why the Jakarta History Museum in Kota, West Jakarta, is presenting an exhibition that helps visitors “fill in the gaps” and rediscover the past.

“Many of the older people living in Jakarta come from places outside the city. They come here to work, looking for money, and go back to where they belong when they get enough,” museum head R. M. Manik said Tuesday after the exhibition opening.

“That’s why so few Jakartans have more than a fleeting impression of the capital’s history,” he said.

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An introduction to Myanmar's history

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18 July 2007 (The Brunei Times) – Literature on the ancient history of Myanmar (Burma) is scant, but this article from the Brunei Times should serve as a quick introduction.

History of Myanmar

Myanmar has a long and complex history. Many peoples have lived in the region and the history began. The first identifiable civilisation is that of the Mon.

The Mon probably began migrating into the area in about 300 BC, and their first kingdom Suwarnabhumi, was founded around the port of Thaton in about 300 BC.

The Pyu arrived in Myanmar in the 7th century and established city kingdoms at Binnaka, Mongamo, Sri Ksetra, and Halingyi. During this period, Myanmar was part of an overland trade route from China to India.

By 849, the Burmans had founded a powerful kingdom centered on the city of Bagan and filled the void left by the Pyu.

The kingdom grew in relative isolation until the reign of Anawrahta (1044 – 77) who successfully unified all of Myanmar by defeating the Mon city of Thaton in 1057.

Read more about the history of Myanmar.

For more about the archaeology of Myanmar, you might want to look up:
Ancient Pagan by D. Stadtner
The Cambridge History of Southeast Asia by N. Tarling (Ed.)

Categories: Burma (Myanmar)

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