A major contribution to the literature of Burmese history and politics, this book traces the rich and tragic history of the Mon people of Burma and Thailand, from the pre-colonial era to the present day. This vivid account of ethnic politics and civil war situates the story of Mon nationalism within the 'big picture' of developments in Burma, Thailand and the region. Primarily an empirical study, it also addresses issues of identity and anticipates Burmese politics in the new millennium. A particular feature of the book is its first-hand descriptions of insurgency and displacement, drawn from the author's experiences as an aid worker in the war zone.
Table of Contents
Part I: The Mon in Burma and Thailand
Part II. Classical Mon Civilisation and the Colonial Period
Part III. Independence, Civil War and Ethnic Insurgency
Part IV. Revolutionaries, Warlords and Refugees
Part V. The Mon Ceasefire and Since
Part VI. The Sheldrake and the Peacock
Ashley South is an independent consultant, specialising in ethnic politics, displacement and humanitarian issues in Burma. He has lived and worked in Burma and Thailand for seven years, first as a teacher and later as a co-ordinator of a major international relief operation. He has visited Burma more than 50 times, and observed the conflict at close quarters, working with Burmese ethnic minority refugees and many key insurgent leaders.
'South's detailed and authoritative book is a must for all interested in Mon history and ethnic minority politics, and for those curious about the dynamics of the civil war and conflicy that has raged in Burma for more than 50 years.' - The Irrawaddy
'Thoroughly researched and full of insights born of personal involvement.' - Asian Affairs
'A very informative, comprehensive and yet concise survey of the social, political and military aspects of Mon nationalist movements in 20th century Burma.' - International Quarterly for Asian Studies
'Fascinating account of a people who are almost unknown outside the region, and who are stuggling to preserve their identity in a rapidly changing world.' - Journal of the Siam Society