New Books Network

C. Baker and P. Phongpaichit, “From the Fifty Jātaka: Selections from the Thai Paññāsa Jātaka” (Silkworm Books, 2019)
The Jātaka tales, or stories of the Buddha’s previous lives as a bodhisatta, are included in the Pāli Canon and have for centuries been a rich source of inspiration in Theravada Buddhism. In addition to these classical Jātaka, a number of other non-canonical Jātaka tales emerged in Southeast Asia and... Read More
Marco Z. Garrido, “The Patchwork City: Class, Space and Politics in Metro Manila” (U Chicago Press, 2019)
In contemporary Manila, slums and squatter settlements are peppered throughout the city, often pushing right up against the walled enclaves of the privileged, creating the complex geopolitical pattern of what sociologist Marco Garrido calls the “patchwork city.” Synthesizing literature in political sociology and urban studies, Garrido shows how experiences along... Read More
Sumit K. Mandal, “Becoming Arab: Creole Histories and Modern Identity in the Malay World” (Cambridge UP, 2018)
In the wake of the so-called war on terror we’ve become accustomed to racialized portrayals of the Arab as an inflexible and threatening other to the mores and ways of the non-Arab world. Although these portrayals are new in their historical contingencies and sociological particulars, the manner in which Arabs... Read More
Jerome Whitington, “Anthropogenic Rivers: The Production of Uncertainty in Lao Hydropower” (Cornell UP, 2019)
Jerome Whitington‘s Anthropogenic Rivers: The Production of Uncertainty in Lao Hydropower (Cornell University Press, 2019) examines the dynamics and discourses centered around the development of hydropower dams in the Mekong River Basin. Through deep and connected ethnographies, the book traces how such projects create ecologically uncertain environments and the surprising... Read More
Sher Banu Khan, “Sovereign Women in a Muslim Kingdom: The Sultanahs of Aceh, 1641-1699” (Cornell UP, 2018)
In her book, Sovereign Women in a Muslim Kingdom: The Sultanahs of Aceh, 1641-1699 (Cornell University Press, 2018), Sher Banu Khan provides a rare and empirically rich view of queenship in early modern maritime Southeast Asia. Four women ruled the Muslim realm of Aceh in succession during the second half... Read More
Christopher J. Shepherd, “Haunted Houses and Ghostly Encounters: Ethnography and Animism in East Timor, 1860-1975” (NIAS Press, 2019)
Anyone who tries to understand the history, religion, and especially the “culture” of Southeast Asia, will soon encounter the phenomenon of animism, the belief that landscapes, natural objects, trees and plants, animals, and deceased ancestors, possess spirits that influence the human world. Yet “animism” is a Western analytical category, coined... Read More
Timothy Barnard, “Imperial Creatures: Humans and Other Animals in Colonial Singapore, 1819-1942” (NUS Press, 2019)
In Imperial Creature: Humans and Other Animals in Colonial Singapore, 1819-1942 (National University of Singapore Press, 2019), Timothy Barnard explores the more-than-human entanglements between empires and the creatures they govern. What is the relationship between the subjugation of human communities and that of animals? How did various interactions with animals... Read More