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Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Myanmar
Published by Routledge
After decades of mismanagement and direct military rule, Myanmar's contested transition to a more democratic government has rapidly shifted the outlook in this significant Southeast Asian nation. Since 2011, the removal of Western sanctions and new foreign investments have resulted in high rates of economic growth and an expanding middle class, albeit from a very low base. In a result unthinkable a few years earlier, former political prisoner and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and her party, the National League for Democracy (NLD), formed a national government in early 2016. However, despite significant political and economic reforms since the liberalisation process commenced, the transition to civilian rule remains constrained by the military's 2008 Constitution, which guarantees that it operates unfettered by civilian oversight. As a result, although some ethnic conflicts have abated, others continue to fester and new conflicts have erupted. With a daunting task ahead the NLD government has made some progress in removing the vestiges of repressive military-era laws but many remain untouched and some of the practices of the new government provide unwelcome reminders of its authoritarian history. This timely Handbook describes the political, economic, and cultural dimensions of this crucial period of transition in Myanmar. It presents explanations for contradictory trends, including those that defy some of the early narratives about the comprehensive transformation of Myanmar. The Handbook also considers the impact of major environmental, strategic, and demographic trends which help underscore that Myanmar's development will be an ongoing task. In addition to introductory and concluding chapters by the editors, the body of the Handbook is divided into seven core sections: * Fundamentals * Spaces * Cultures * Living * Governance * International * Challenges Written by an international team of scholars, with a mix of world-leading established academics and talented emerging researchers, the Handbook provides a rigorous scholarly overview of Myanmar's politics, economics, and society. As Myanmar opens to Western businesses and government agencies, this is an invaluable reference book that will provide a foundation for further research and offer the first port of call for scholars, students, and policy makers working on Myanmar and Asia.
Introduction Explaining Myanmar in Flux and Transition, Nicholas Farrelly, Ian Holliday and Adam Simpson Part I: Fundamentals The State, Maitrii Aung-Thwin The Defence Services, Andrew Selth Democracy, John H Badgley and Ian Holliday Ethnicity and Identity, Violet Cho Part II: Spaces The Capital, Nicholas Farrelly Urban, Jayde Lin Roberts Rural, Ardeth Maung Thawnghmung Borderlands, Patrick Meehan and Mandy Sadan Cyber-Spaces, Gerard McCarthy Anomalous Spaces, Nicholas Farrelly Part III: Cultures Languages, David Bradley Religion, Charles Carstens Arts, Charlotte Galloway Public Discourse, Tom Kean Diasporas, Inga Grusss Youth, Jacqueline Menager Part IV: Living Political Economy, Lee Jones Agriculture, Ikuko Okamoto Banking and Finance, Thomas Foerch FDI and Trade, Jared Bissinger Part V: Governance Executive, Ian Holliday and Su Mon Thazin Aung Legislature, Renaud Egreteau and Cindy Joelene Judiciary, Melissa Crouch Civil Society, Christina Fink and Adam Simpson Education, Marie Lall Health, Celine Coderey Part VI: International World, David Steinberg Regional, Jurgen Haacke Neighbourhood, Renaud Egreteau and Li Chenyang International Non-Governmental Organisations and Advocacy, John Dale and Samantha Samuel-Nakka International Law and Inter-Governmental Organisations, Tyler Giannini and Matthew Bugher International Assistance, Ian Holliday and Zaw Htet Part VII: Challenges Peace and Reconciliation, Kim Jollife Democratisation and Human Rights, Morten Pederson Gender, Khin Mar Mar Kyi Nation Building, Matthew Walton Class and Inequality, Elliott Prasse-Freeman and Phyo Win Latt Environment and Natural Resources, Adam Simpson Conclusion Myanmar Futures, Adam Simpson, Ian Holliday and Nicholas Farrelly
Adam Simpson is Director of the Centre for Peace and Security at the Hawke Research Institute and Senior Lecturer in International Studies at the University of South Australia. He is also Adjunct Research Fellow at the Centre for Governance and Public Policy at Griffith University, Australia. Nicholas Farrelly is an Associate Dean of the College of Asia and the Pacific at the Australian National University and Director of the ANU Myanmar Research Centre. Ian Holliday is Vice-President and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Teaching and Learning) at the University of Hong Kong.
Reviewer: Caleb Simmons
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