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True Love and Bartholomew
Rebels on the Burmese Border


  • Date Published: May 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521399203

£ 30.99

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About the Authors
  • Jonathan Falla, a nurse and prizewinning playwright, spent an illegal year living with the Karen rebels. His richly illustrated account of life in the Burmese jungle creates an evocative portrait of a people fighting to preserve their way of life. The Karen, one of Burma's many minority peoples, have been waging an increasingly desperate war for autonomy against the Burmese government since 1949. Burma's 'closed door' policies have prevented any close study of Karen society since the 1920s and more recent writers have been forced to concentrate on Karen refugee communities in Thailand. Discussing all aspects of Karen life, this is no ordinary anthropological study but a highly personalized account. Based on the lives of individual Karen there are chapters on music, food, love, the patterns of forest and river life, on women, language, weaponry and mercenaries, and on the symbols of rebel nationalism.

    Reviews & endorsements

    'Jonathan Falla offers us the human face of political change in contemporary Burma, a behind-the-lines view of the Karen Free State. There is all the erudition that we find in more formal texts but none of the pretension. What we are finally offered is a fresh and sharp view that is anthropological in the truest sense. It conveys to us the 'feel' of another way of life.' Nigel Barley

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2006
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521399203
    • length: 428 pages
    • dimensions: 234 x 156 x 22 mm
    • weight: 0.6kg
    • contains: 20 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Foreword Nigel Barley
    1. A bronze drum
    2. Boar tusk's children
    3. White collar flowerland
    4. True love at home
    5. Water child, land child
    6. A simple man
    7. Fighting mean, fighting clean
    8. Great lake and the elephant man
    9. Bartholomew's borders
    10. The three seasons
    Interlude: from the Kok River
    11. Last of the longhouses
    12. A delicate bamboo tongue
    13. True love in love
    14. Fermented monkey faeces
    15. Perfect hosts
    16. Old guard, young turks
    17. True love and white rock
    18. Insurgents in a landscape
    19. True love and sudden death
    20. Portraits

  • Author

    Jonathan Falla

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