Our Monograph Series on Southeast Asia began in 2000.

Contemporary Lao Studies

Contemporary Lao Studies: Research on Development, Language and Culture, and Traditional Medicine
Carol J. Compton, John F. Hartmann, Vinya Sysamouth, editors
323 pages
Co-published by The Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Northern Illinois University and The Center for Lao Studies (San Francisco, USA)

The edited volume comprises fourteen articles that were originally presented at the First International Conference on Lao Studies held at Northern Illinois University in 2005. The articles are based on fieldwork conducted in the Lao People?s Democratic Republic by specialists in the areas of contemporary development, linguistics, and traditional medicine. To order, please contact the Center for Lao Studies, San Francisco.

The Middle Mekong River BasinThe Middle Mekong River Basin: Studies in Tai History and Culture
Constance M. Wilson, editor
412 pages

Four authors consider the history, art, literature, religious beliefs, and social urbanization of the peoples along the banks of the Mekong from their arrival to the nineteenth century. Articles explore what life was like for the Tai-Lue, Shan, Black Tai, and Lao. Contributors: Marc Askew, John Hartmann, Ratanaporn Sethakul, and Constance M. Wilson.

Limits of KinshipThe Limits of Kinship: South Vietnamese Households 1954-1975
David W. Haines
331 pages

Using a variety of census and survey material, The Limits of Kinship draws a portrait of family, kinship, and household in southern Vietnam during the tumultuous period between the end of the French Indochina War and the fall of Saigon. Haines explores how the southern Vietnamese experience can be compared to earlier historical periods and to contemporary conditions in southern and northern Vietnam and among Vietnamese overseas.

Vo Phien and the Sadness of ExileVo Phien and the Sadness of Exile
John C. Schafer
367 pages

In this first book-length study in English of a modern Vietnamese writer, John C. Schafer introduces readers to Võ Phiến, one of the most respected writers in the Vietnamese diaspora. Schafer examines in detail Võ Phiến?s extensive writings and analyzes their intimate relationship to Vietnamese culture, historical events, and the dislocating effects of exile.

Read a review for this book on Amazon.

Southeast Asia: Crossroads of the WorldSoutheast Asia: Crossroads of the World, 2nd edition
Clark Neher
184 pages

This newly revised introductory text for high school and undergraduate students is also useful background reading for upper-division courses and for individuals new to the study of Southeast Asia. It provides an introduction to the history, culture, and politics of the separate Southeast Asian countries and of the region as a whole. To order, please visit Northern Illinois University Press.


Killing a Buffalo for the AncestorsKilling a Buffalo for the Ancestors:
A Zhuang Cosmological Text from Southwest China
David Holm
221 pages

A milestone in Zhuang studies. Focusing on the ancient practice of buffalo sacrifice, it also provides a wealth of background material on Zhuang cultural history. It will begin to redress the near-total lack of Western-language sources dealing with the Zhuang people, China?s largest minority ?nationality.? The discovery and translation of a cosmological text written in one of the Thai-related Zhuang dialects of Southwest China provides opportunity to investigate the rituals of buffalo sacrifice, while providing valuable information on the dialect's phonetic structure, its writing system, and its relevance for understanding the development and distribution of the Tai family of languages. The book also provides information on the history and social structure of the Zhuang and Bouyei of Guangxi province and on the interplay of linguistic communities within the province.

Winner of the 2005 Excellence in Translating award from the Australian Institute of Interpreters and Translators

Vietnamese VoicesVietnamese Voices:
Gender and Cultural Identity in the Vietnamese Francophone Novel
Nathalie Huynh Chau Nguyen
239 pages

Vietnamese Voices provides a detailed account of French colonialism and its demise on an impressive number of Francophone Vietnamese writers. The author illuminates the divergent ways in which male and female writers negotiate the complexities of their rich and difficult multiple cultural heritages.

Review by Anne-Marie Medcalf's in Intersections: Gender, History and Culture in the Asian Context journal

Cambodia Emerges from the Past: Eight EssaysCambodia Emerges from the Past: Eight Essays
Judy Ledgerwood
320 pages

The Eight Essays exemplify the best trends of recent scholarship, employing new data on contemporary Cambodia and new theoretical approaches to the study of the Khmer Rouge. This book contains eight essays from the foremost experts in Khmer Studies. With chapters from David Chandler, Steve Heder, May Ebihara, John Marston, Susan Cook, Alex Hinton, Carol Mortland, John Vijghen, Keang Un, and Judy Ledgerwood, this book is a must have for Cambodian scholars.

The Money TrailThe Money Trail: Burmese Currencies in Crisis
Marilyn Longmuir
$30.00 (please add $5 for international shipping) and order through the Center for Burma Studies here
130 pages

The Money Trail outlines the rapid succession of currencies used in Burma in the 1930s and 1940s, recounts the economic effects of the wartime currency crises, and details the considerations in the formulation of the British financial policies during and after the Japanese occupation.

The Burmese HarpThe Burmese Harp: Its Classical Music, Tunings and Modes
Muriel C. Williamson
$30.00 (please add $5 for international shipping) and order through the Center for Burma Studies here
130 pages

At a time when the Burmese musical tradition was undergoing rapid change, Muriel C. Williamson studied Burmese harp under Masters trained in the courtly traditions of the nineteenth century. Her book explores the harp and its music, the late twentieth-century Westernization of the tunings, and the tetrachordal structure of the musical modes.