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Strange Parallels

Strange Parallels
Southeast Asia in Global Context, c.800–1830

Volume 1. Integration on the Mainland

$41.99 (C)

Part of Studies in Comparative World History

  • Date Published: May 2003
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521804967

$ 41.99 (C)
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About the Authors
  • In an ambitious effort to overcome the extreme fragmentation of early Southeast Asian historiography, this study connects Southeast Asia to world history. Victor Lieberman argues that over a thousand years, each of mainland Southeast Asia's great lowland corridors experienced a pattern of accelerating integration punctuated by recurrent collapse. These trajectories were synchronized not only between corridors, but most curiously, between the mainland as a whole, much of Europe, and other sectors of Eurasia. Lieberman describes in detail the nature of mainland consolidation and dissects the mix of endogenous and external factors responsible.

    • A uniquely comprehensive interpretation of pre-colonial Southeast Asian history
    • A novel interpretation of Eurasian history and, by implication, a challenge to entrenched theories of European exceptionalism
    • An unusual blend of archival work and secondary literature - of local detail and large-scale theorization
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Victor Lieberman was among those superb scholars who transformed our understanding of pre-colonial Burma a decade and more ago..." Nicholas Tarling, New Zealand Asia Institute

    "Lieberman has accomplished a monumental task, that of giving a broad overview and at the same time a very detailed account of a thousand year history of Southeast Asia. The book takes a comprehensive approach and justifies its stance both by recounting previous research and by anticipating future criticism. This book definitely is a landmark in the historiography of the region; it is well grounded in scholarship and will stimulate great discussions. It is a must-read for anyone doing research on the region in order to build a solid foundation upon which any focused research will have to base itself." Folklore Bulletin

    "This is the most ambitious and challenging effort any scholar has yet made to bring Southeast Asian history into the mainstream of the human experience in cogently postcolonial terms. Lieberman demonstrates the interactiveness of the histories of Asia and Europe from a Southeast Asian vantage point, and his stimulating comparative analysis of the evolution of Southeast Asian polities themselves will be required reading for anyone with an interest in the region. Highly recommended." Alexander Woodside, University of British Columbia, author of Vietnam and the Chinese Model

    "This is going to be a very important book, which will seal Victor Lieberman's reputation as one of the finest historians of South East Asia and, indeed, one of the most original historians dealing with worldwide comparisons." M.C.Ricklefs, University of Melbourne

    "This manuscript certainly marked the new frontier that Victor Lieberman has opened for the field of Southeast Asian as well as European history. In a magnificent yet convincing manner Lieberman has unfolded a picture scroll of one thousand years of Southeast Asian and Eurasian history that only few scholars in the world can do, and even fewer have done...There are brilliant insights and discussions throughout the chapters, full of vigor, coherence and originality...Let me say again that this manuscript is a masterpiece...It is extremely important and will, I predict, become a landmark not only in the study of Southeast Asia but also in the study of early modern world history." Li Tana, Australian National University, author of Nguyen Cochinchina

    "The work is fascinating and enlightening. It has an originality which readers have come to expect from Victor Lieberman. The argument rests upon immensely wide reading in Asian and European history. More than that, on every page Lieberman's critical intelligence is fully engaged...This gives the book the quality of an ongoing debate...which will stimulate much discussion and debate amongst his colleagues...This is going to be a very important book which will seal Victor Lieberman's reputation as one of the finest historians of South East Asia, and, indeed, one of the most original historians dealing with worldwide comparisons." M.C. Ricklefs, University of Melbourne, author of A History of Modern Indonesia since c. 1200

    "A tour de force...one of the best histories of pre-colonial Southeast Asia I have ever read. Theoretically provocative, this ambitious and highly original work will challenge how we understand world history for years to come." Thongchai Winichakul, University of Wisconsin, author of Siam Mapped

    "This is certainly a book of extraordinary ambitious aims. First it seeks to provide an entirely new approach-not simply a 'novel interpretation,' as Lieberman himself rather modestly has it-of the history of mainland South East Asia from the ninth to the nineteenth century...But what makes the book so striking is that Lieberman, while keeping his eye firmly fixed on the big themes, also possesses an extraordinary grasp of detail...This book will excite controversy, not least because of its impressive range and the high quality of its scholarship." Ian Brown, University of London, author of The Elite and the Economy in Siam, c. 1890-1920

    "This book, and the agenda it sets forth for scholars of the twenty-first century is an enormous and valuable contribution to the field.' Journal of Asian History Michael W. Charney, School of Oriental and African Studies

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2003
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521804967
    • length: 510 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 164 x 31 mm
    • weight: 0.68kg
    • contains: 8 b/w illus. 7 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction: the ends of the earth: Part A. Rethinking Southeast Asia
    Part B. Implications for Eurasia
    2. One basin, two poles: the western mainland and the formation of Burma
    3. A stable, maritime consolidation: the central mainland
    4. 'The least coherent territory in the world': Vietnam and the eastern mainland
    Conclusion.

  • Author

    Victor Lieberman, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

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