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Home > Books & Journals > Journal Abstracts Last Updated: 14:23 03/09/2007
Journal Abstracts #172: October 29, 2004

Journal of Southeast Asian Studies

Journal Name: Journal of Southeast Asian Studies: October 2004, Volume 35, Issue 3
Print ISSN:0022-4634 Online ISSN:1476-0680


Picturesque Burma: British Travel Writing 1890–1914 (pp387-414)
Stephen L. Keck (The History Department, National University of Singapore.)
With the end of effective resistance to British rule after the Third Anglo-Burmese War, Burma experienced significant economic growth, which led to larger numbers of foreign travellers going there. This article traces the publications of three travel writers – Mrs Ernst (Alice) Hart, R. Talbot Kelley and V. C. Scott O'Connor – by investigating the ways in which they relied on the concept of 'picturesque' to understand Burmese landscapes.

Chinese Enterprise in Colonial Malaya: the Case of Eu Tong Sen (pp415-432)
Lian Kwen Fee (The Sociology Department, National University of Singapore.) and Koh Keng We (The History Department, University of Hawaii at Manoa.)
This article is critical of the culturalist perspective as an explanation for the development of Chinese entrepreneurship. Drawing on Eu Tong Sen's business strategies and career between 1897 and 1920 as case study, it identifies the endogenous and exogenous conditions affecting Chinese business activities in colonial Malaya. Alfred Chandler's work on the rise of the modern business enterprise is argued to be particularly relevant for an economic history of Chinese business in Southeast Asia.

Vision, Power and Agency: The Ascent of Ngô D́nh Diêm, 1945–54 (pp433-458)
Edward Miller (The History Department at Dartmouth College.)
This article challenges existing interpretations of Ngô D́nh Diêm by examining his activities during the decade before he became leader of South Vietnam in 1954. Diêm actively pursued power in these years, and he achieved it mainly due to his own efforts and to those of his Vietnamese allies. At the same time, he and his brother Ngô D́nh Nhu were outlining the distinctive vision of modernisation which would inform South Vietnam's post-1954 nation-building strategies.

The Anchor and the Voice of 10,000 Waterfront Workers: Jamit Singh in the Singapore Story (1954–63) (pp459-478)
Liew Kai Khiun (The Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine at University College in London.)
Jamit Singh's legacy as a charismatic trade unionist and political activist on Singapore's waterfront coincided with its changing political developments. He was instrumental in bringing about this change by transforming the dock workers into an effective political force. His subsequent banishment by the People's Action Party government brought an end to a colourful episode in the history of Singapore's harbour.

Guanxi and Regulation in Networks: The Yunnanese Jade Trade between Burma and Thailand, 1962–88 (pp479-501)
Wen-Chin Chang (The Center for Asia-Pacific Area Studies of the Academia Sinica in Taibei.)
The article investigates the operation of the jade trading networks from Burma to Thailand during the period of the Burmese socialist regime. The trade, a significant ethnic enterprise undertaken by Yunnanese migrants, has relied on transnational networks that deal with different political and economic systems beyond the jurisdiction of the state. The network approach is used to analyse the intertwining of guanxi formation and regulatory observance.

Domestic Service in Thailand: Reflection of Conflicts in Gender, Class and Ethnicity (pp503-529)
Raya Muttarak (The Department of Sociology at Oxford University.)
This study discusses paid domestic service employment in Thailand. Disparities in income distribution in the country and elsewhere in Southeast Asia provide a supply of domestic workers. Despite being commonly known as an exporter of domestic workers, Thailand is in fact a primary importing country as well. Domestic service is an arena in which gender, class and ethnicity collide.

Tohari's Trilogy: Passages of Power and Time in Java (pp531-556)
Nancy I. Cooper (The Center for Southeast Asia Studies at UCLA.)
Ahmad Tohari's trilogy of novels conjures up national demons of Indonesia's darkest historical moment. In reading across the grain of anti-communism and pro-moral reform, this article analyses a wealth of gender imagery. Javanese complementarity, although unequal, recognises a kind of dramatic feminine power that need not be threatening as long as men exercise self-restraint. Although modernisation tends to dichotomise persons into 'castes' of the sinful and virtuous, alternative modernities drawn from Javanese cultural sensibilities are also conceivable.

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