Southeast Asia has in recent years become a crossroads of cultures with high levels of ethnic pluralism, not only between countries, sub-regions and urban areas, but also at the local levels of community and neighbourhood. Illustrated by a series of international case studies, this book demonstrates how the forces of 'post-colonialism' in their various manifestations are accelerating social change and creating new and 'imagined' communities, some of which are potentially disruptive and which may well threaten the longer term sustainability of the region. Interdisciplinary in approach, this book brings together geographers, historians, anthropologists, architects, education specialists, planners and sociologists to make connections and new insights and to provide a truly comprehensive view of heritage, culture and identity in this dynamic region.
'The idea of Southeast Asia as a cultural "crossroads'"has a long history. This edited volume brings the crossroads leitmotif right up to the present in an eclectic collection of papers in which most scholars of contemporary social and cultural change in Southeast Asia will find rich rewards.' Jonathan Rigg, University of Durham, UK 'Historically Southeast Asia has often been portrayed as a region of "fragmented identity" between the two larger cultural realms of East Asia and the Indian sub-continent. This excellent collection of essays explores how Southeast Asian nations and people are reshaping their identity in the face of global regional and local influences by taking control of their diverse identities through the rewriting of the heritage in the landscapes of post modernism.' Terry McGee, University of British Columbia, Canada