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Where China Meets India: Burma and the New Crossroads of Asia
 
 

Where China Meets India: Burma and the New Crossroads of Asia [Kindle Edition]

Thant Myint-U
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Review

'Confident and enthralling discussion.' --John Keay, Literary Review

'Thant writes compellingly about how both India and China have changed their attitudes towards the military junta ... [he is] an idiosyncratic cultural historian. ... the book possesses a heartfelt and welcome optimism, giving voice to a desire for connections that exceeds all notions of foreign policy, geopolitics or business and becomes, instead, about people encountering each other in all their glorious difference.' --Siddhartha Deb, Guardian

Thant Myint-U ... is in a perfect position to comment on the past, present and future of a country whose fate in intertwined with its boisterous neighbours, and he does so in this fascinating book with skill and rare insight.' --Oxford Times

Book Description

Where China Meets India is a vivid, searching, and timely book about a remote region that is suddenly becoming a geopolitical center of the world.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1044 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber Non Fiction (18 Aug 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005CG8I24
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #148,826 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author


Thant Myint-U was born in New York City in 1966 to Burmese parents and was educated at Harvard and Cambridge University, where he completed his PhD in history in 1996.
He has served on three United Nations peacekeeping operations, in Cambodia and in the former Yugoslavia, as well as six years with the UN Secretariat in NY, including as the head of policy planning in the Department of Political Affairs.

He has also taught modern history for several years as a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, and is the author of three books, The Making of Modern Burma, The River of Lost Footsteps: A Personal History of Burma, and, most recently, Where China Meets India: Burma and the New Crossroads of Asia, which was short-listed for the Asia Society's Bernard Schwartz Book Award in 2012.

He is currently a member of the (Myanmar) National Economic and Social Advisory Council, a Special Advisor to the Myanmar Peace Centre, the Chairman of the Yangon Heritage Trust and the Vice-Chairman of the World Economic Forum's South East Asia Council. He divides his time between Yangon (Rangoon) and Bangkok.

He was named by Foreign Policy magazine as one of the "100 Leading Global Thinkers" of 2013.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Burma's more important than you think 29 Aug 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I went to Burma once, taking one of those slightly illicit border crossings while trekking in Mae Hong Son, Northern Thailand. Carefully and safely guided hrough different villages of 'hill tribe' people, it felt more like a steamy and exhausting museum tour than a real journey. It's impossible to know what you're seeing in 3 days, when you don't know the language and are a bit overwhelmed by it all.

Thant Myint U is Burmese, and speaks some Chinese and some Tibetan too, so his travels through that wild, uncharted area between Burma, China and India are full of the people he meets and the conversations he has, while he tries to work out what's going on and how the rise of China and India as economic superpowers affects and, is affected by, the lands he's travelling in.

What will happen when there's motorway and high speed rail all the way from Beijing through Kunming to Rangoon, and perhaps from Delhi too? Will the west have any relevance at all? Will Burma become a province of China, or will it manage to use India as a balance?

I'm not sure that Thant Myint U really answers these questions, and perhaps its just too early to tell, but he gives a fascinating travelogue of the area, its historic links to China and India, and a light insight into the geopolitics around it.

Worth buying in the kindle edition, though perhaps not quite at the hardback price.
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5.0 out of 5 stars very informative 5 July 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Thant Myint -U is very knowledgeable about the history of Burma and weaves this together with the present and looking to the future. His travel stories are interesting and easy to read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Myanmar at a crossroads 18 Aug 2012
By Acorn
Format:Hardcover
Historian Thant Myint-U is the author of The River of Lost Footsteps (2006), in my view the best introduction to Myanmar's sad history and why its despotic military rulers are so driven by xenophobia and delusion. In this new book, Myint-U looks at Myanmar in a broader regional context and asks how it might prosper, nestled as it is between the large emerging powers of India and China. The question has particular relevance for Myanmar, but it is also one that faces the other countries of mainland south-east Asia, and ASEAN as a regional bloc.

Part One of the book looks at the historical background, sweeping quickly over ancient times and focusing very much on the European colonial period and its impact on the diversity of people and networks in the region. We tend to forget how today's populations are often the outcome of peculiar theories on the part of colonial administrators and the cold, commercial imperatives of colonial enterprises. It is sobering to see how much of a rich traffic in people and ideas was lost with the advent of modern borders.

The middle section of the book takes us to the borderlands with China and shows how towns and communities there are dealing with the size and dominance of Chinese production and marketing. Chinese ascendancy in many parts of northern and north-western Myanmar resembles patterns in northern Laos and northern Thailand, if more advanced. Myint-U's account is full of interesting details but tends towards the descriptive and, at times, nostalgic. I wanted to learn more about the coping strategies of these border peoples and how they manipulate the new cultural divide. There are some hints, but I was left feeling hungry.

The third section of the book moves to the other border - with India.
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4 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Shameful 27 Sep 2011
By Cdl
Format:Hardcover
Mr Thant Myin U should be ashamed

His own articles regarding "where China meets India" that were published in British newspapers and translated notably in French are simply appalling.

Mr That Myn U, Burmese teacher in Cambridge, makes his aforementioned articles transparent to the Burmese struggle.

He makes no mention whatsoever of the 2000+ political prisoners in Burma, he makes no mention of how these prisoners are treated and that nobody gets to hear from most of them in and/or outside Burma.

He makes no mention whatsoever of inhumane crimes still perpetrated in Kayin, Kachin, Shan and other states by the Junta's army.

He makes no mention whatsoever of the thousands of Burmese forced labour to build dams all across the country only to serve the profit of China and a few other western companies who blindly and carelessly pays the Burmese junta.

He should be ashamed living in a western country as a Burmese intelligentsia skipping those important matters.

Where today Yangon and more largely Burmese citizens are afraid of naming their dictators names, where they are even more afraid of pronouncing publicly the name of Aung San Suu Kyi !

Where the pavements in suburban areas or country sides are built hand by hand and brick by brick by women ! and last but not least where the new "academical" generation dreams of Malaysia, not of China or India they can hardly see a new so called "global : where China meets India" era occurring any time in the near future. Where is the globalisation here ? except perhaps for the Junta and their cronies !

Im appalled and saddened by this book and its promotional articles
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.7 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best book on Burma contemporary history 28 Oct 2012
By Khun Panot - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book gave me a very good information on Myanmar history and her role as a link between two powerful civilizations, China and India. As a historian, Thant Myint-U first explained Burma's history then presented the current situation, followed by various possible directions Myanmar can choose in the near future. If you want to truly understand about this country and her increasingly important role in the region, I strongly recommend this book.
5.0 out of 5 stars "Where China Meets India" by Thant Myint-U 2 Mar 2013
By Judith K. Binney - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
"Where China Meets India" by Thant Myint-U is a wonderfully written book about a fascinating part of the world that most Westerners, I imagine, don't know very well. Thant Myint-U tells us the history of the people, places and intersections of China, Burma and Northeast India-- how they have related over the past 2000 years -- and how they may relate in the future. An enlightening book and a pleasure to read!
Judith Binney
New York, NY
2 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Shameful 27 Sep 2011
By Cdl - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
Mr Thant Myin U should be ashamed

His own articles regarding "where China meets India" that were published in British newspapers and translated notably in French are simply appalling.

Mr That Myn U, Burmese teacher in Cambridge, makes his aforementioned articles transparent to the Burmese struggle.

He makes no mention whatsoever of the 2000+ political prisoners in Burma, he makes no mention of how these prisoners are treated and that nobody gets to hear from most of them in and/or outside Burma.

He makes no mention whatsoever of inhumane crimes still perpetrated in Kayin, Kachin, Shan and other states by the Junta's army.

He makes no mention whatsoever of the thousands of Burmese forced labour to build dams all across the country only to serve the profit of China and a few other western companies who blindly and carelessly pays the Burmese junta.

He should be ashamed living in a western country as a Burmese intelligentsia skipping those important matters.

Today Yangon (Rangoon) and more largely Burmese citizens are afraid of naming their dictators names, where they are even more afraid of pronouncing publicly the name of Aung San Suu Kyi !

Where the pavements in suburban areas or country sides are built hand by hand brick by brick by women and last but not least where the new "academical" generation dreams of Malaysia, not of China or India and hardly see a new so called "global" era any time in the near future, where is the globalisation here ? except perhaps for the Junta and their cronies !

Im appalled and saddened by this book and its promotional articles !
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Popular Highlights

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for most of the past 2,000 years it was India, not China, that enjoyed the closest connections with southeast Asia and was by far the premier source of outside cultural and religious inspiration. &quote;
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One way of seeing China is not so much as a rising superpower but a re-emerging one. The country was, for centuries until the 1800s, the biggest economy in the world (with the possible exception of Mughal India) and arguably the most technologically advanced. &quote;
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Nehru even turned down an American offer of a permanent seat on the UN Security Council (now much coveted by New Delhi) in protest against Washington’s refusal to offer the same to the Chinese communist regime. &quote;
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