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Review Article Of Caste and Colonialism Sekhar Bandyopadhyay, Caste, Culture and Hegemony: Social Dominance in Colonial Bengal Sekhar Bandyopadhyay, From Plassey to Partition: A History of Modern India TONY BALLANTYNE (UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO)
Not Knowing The Oriental, pp. 33-46 Douglas Kerr This paper marks the twenty-fifth year of Edward Said's Orientalism by reconsidering the knowledge/power paradigm that has dominated much thinking about colonial discourse after Said. In addition to cases of ‘sublime' ignorance, when the Orient was felt to be too vast, daunting and mysterious ever to be contained by western knowledge, there were also moments, and even strategies, of prophylactic ignorance, in which the western observer stepped back from venturing into the hinterland of Oriental experience, for fear of being overwhelmed, contaminated, compromised, assimilated or consumed. In such cases, colonial authority depended on not knowing too much. The theme of colonial ignorance is pursued in an investigation of one of Said's prime witnesses, the Earl of Cromer, for twenty-five years de facto governor of Egypt, whose authoritative Modern Egypt insists nonetheless that ‘the Egyptian Puzzle' must remain insoluble by the Englishman. The argument here is that this is a strategic ignorance that protects or insulates the Englishman's power. The second part of the essay turns to Rudyard Kipling's Indian fiction, in which knowing the Oriental is a glamorous but dangerous pursuit. Kipling's policeman hero Strickland seeks insider knowledge to increase his power over Indians, but in doing so he jeopardizes the distance on which his difference from them, and authority over them, depends. This compromises his status with both Indians and his fellow British. Sometimes it is ignorance of the Orient that secures power. Kipling's colonial characters are frequently caught in this dilemma – knowledge of the Oriental is dangerous, but ignorance is insupportable.
Imagining a Nation: Lloyd Fernando's Scorpion Orchid and National Identity, pp. 47-55 M.Y. Chiu This article examines the construction of national identity in Lloyd Fernando's Scorpion Orchid, a postcolonial novel that consciously mobilises the knowledge of culture and history to forge a sense of community. Weaving together Western narratives and Asian texts, Fernando creates, through several mutually reinforcing levels, the image of a pluralistic, multi-ethnic society. Scorpion Orchid, neatly exemplifying some of the basic mechanics of nation formation, can be regarded as an instance of national identity engineering.
Configuring the Dynamics Of Dispossession in Rohinton Mistry's A Fine Balance & Arundhati Roy's The God Of Small Things, pp. 56-76 Doreen D'Cruz This essay engages in a comparative study of how the politics of caste and gender operate in Rohinton Mistry's A Fine Balance (1995) and in Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things (1997). Through reference to some key anthropological texts, it sets up the context for its discussion by investigating the logic underpinning the defilement associated with Untouchables and women on account of their constructed proximity to certain biological processes. Notwithstanding the guarantees made by India's secular constitution towards Untouchables and women, both novels show the continuity of native structures of oppression that are immune to or appropriative of both democratic and Marxist models of social, political, and economic reform. Since, for both authors, the fantasy of power and its attendant paranoia have their source in the problematic relationship with the body, both turn to the intimate stage, where the drama of "small things" are played out, in order to refigure this relationship. Through surveys of their different narrative strategies, both novels are interpreted as ultimately subscribing to an inclusive ethic.
Yuan Hongdao's "A History of the Vase", pp. 77-93 Duncan Campbell This article offers the first complete English translation of Yuan Hongdao's (1568-1610) "A History of the Vase" (Pingshi), completed in 1599. This work, in 13 sections and dealing with aspects of the nomenclature, hierarchy and care of cut flowers, is an important and influential early example of the burgeoning late-Ming dynasty literature of connoisseurship. A short introduction seeks to situate this text within the trajectory of Yuan's developing ideas about the nature and role of literature. An Appendix provides a table of corresponding common and botanical names for all the plants and flowers mentioned in the text.
Hoshi Shinichi and the Space-Age Fable, pp. 94-114 Sayuri Matsushima In Japan, the works of Hoshi Shinichi can be said to be synonymous with science fiction and the short short story. However, such an association place them in categories that may hinder them from being valued as works possessing the kind of literary worth they deserve. Hence, in this paper, firstly, the terms science fiction and the short short story will be looked at in relation to Hoshi Shinichi's works. Following this, space age fable and folk tale are considered as terms that more accurately describe the features of his works that are noteworthy. Two of Hoshi's short short stories, ‘Manê eiji' and ‘Kata no ue no hisho' are then introduced in order to demonstrate that a feature in Hoshi's works that give them depth is the incorporation of satire. The methods used include exaggeration, future/speculative settings, irony, absurd humour, and identifiable stereotypes.
Beyond Boundaries: Centre/Periphery Discourse in Oe Kenzaburo's Dojidai Gemu & Witi Ihimaera's The Matriarch, pp. 115-144 Christopher Isherwood In 2001 Japan experienced a tremor that shook the very foundations of its society. The new history textbook written by order of the Ministry of Education was condemned in a scandal that reverberated throughout Asia. The authors, along with the government, were cordially told what they had forgotten to mention. And while the history pundits swiftly pointed out the gaps and silences, one point lay ominously quiet, concealed within the word colonization. Although the word colonization has been used to explain Japan's military expansion into Asia and the United State's postwar occupation it can also help to explain Japan's transition from a closed feudal society to a modern nation-state. Ironically, this process had been thoroughly analyzed more than three decade before the history textbook fiasco. According to author and Nobel laureate Oe Kenzaburo the missing piece to the puzzle lies in a different understanding of history that can only be viewed from the periphery of society. In his novel Dojidai Gemu Oe delves deep into the marginalized spaces of Japanese sociopolitical history to reveal the machinations of Japan's centralization as a form of "internal colonization". These themes in Oe's work have remained strangely silent, partly due to his isolation by politically motivated groups and partly due to an increasing emphasis in Japan to bolster a unified identity based on a national literature. On the other side of the Pacific New Zealand Maori writer Witi Ihimaera tackles many of the same issues including colonization, historical injustices, national myths, and alienation to name a few. In his novel The Matriarch Ihimaera writes against "official" history revealing in his own imaginative way a story that has been largely forgotten. While they write from different locals Oe and Ihimaera are essentially after the same thing: recognition. In this paper I attempt to reveal Oe's entirely new interpretation of modern Japanese history as a form of internal colonization by offering a comparative literary analysis of centre/periphery discourse in his novel Dojidai Geemu and Ihimaera's work The Matriarch. Ultimately it is only by going beyond national boundaries and by resituating Oe within the larger sphere of Asia Pacific literature that such recognition can be achieved.
Articles Honour, Violence and Conflicting Narratives: A Study of Myth and Reality, pp. 5 - 24 BADRI NARAYAN (G.B. PANT SOCIAL SCIENCE INSTITUTE) In the predominantly agrarian patriarchial societies of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh that are still trapped between tradition and modernity, even today the moral values projected through Manusmriti and other ancient Brahminical religious texts of the Hindus heavily influence the mindset of the people. In these societies, marriage, negotiated strictly within the caste configurations and symbolised by the vermillion mark in the parting of the hair of women, is the only situation which legitimises the relationship between an unrelated man and a woman. In no other situation is a relationship between a man and a woman who do not belong to the same family, tolerated. Even today asymmetrical love relationships between members of the upper castes and those belonging to castes and communities in the lower socio-economic strata, and also narratives about such relationships, produce violence at various levels. This paper deals with the phenomenon of violence that took place around such an asymetrical love relationship and tries to analyse the relationship between the myths and realities centering around this story. The fractured nature of folk society is reflected in the various contesting versions of this myth
An Accord of Cautious Distance: Muslims in New Zealand, Ethnic Relations, and Image Management, pp. 24 - 50 ERICH KOLIG (UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO) The terrorist attacks in the USA of 11th September 2001 have tended to problematise the presence of Muslims in Western society. In the aftermath of these events media and popular press have re-evaluated Western Muslims and Islam per se in terms of whether these pose an inherent threat. This paper discusses the presence of Muslims in New Zealand, the policies the major Muslim organisations pursue in terms of encouraging a particular Islamic and Muslim identity within the Muslim community and projecting an acceptable image of Islam vis-à-vis the host society. It also discusses the host society's reaction to the presence of a Muslim minority, which appears, so far, to be noticeably different to the situation in other Western countries.
The Myth of Multiracialism in Post-9/11 Singapore: The Tudung Incident, pp. 51 - 72 LAW KAM-YEE (CITY UNIVERSITY OF HONG KONG) In early 2002, the easily neglected Muslim headscarf incident in Singapore has triggered a rare but fiery and continuous debate within the country, which widely involves her neighbors. Through the incident, this article reveals the plight of Singapore's Malay Muslims, who have been marginalized for a long time from the state's commitment to social mobility and ethnic integration. The article queries the Singaporean government's commitment to both multiracialism and shared values is self-contradictory, as well as the country's possible miscarriage of political openness since late 1980s. The situation seems to be getting worse in the international context of Post-Asian Economic Crisis and Post-September 11 anti-terrorism.
Interpreting Chinese Tradition: A Clansmen Organization in Singapore, pp. 72 - 90 SELINA CHING CHAN (NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE) This paper takes the case of a Pang clansmen organization in Singapore and examines how its activities objectify Chinese tradition and negotiate identity and nationalism. I argue that these activities celebrated within the national boundaries contribute to the reinforcement of Chinese tradition and celebration of Singaporean Chinese identity within Singapore's multi-ethnic society. In addition, joint activities and other linkages to the Pangs in their homeland in China further bind the Pangs from different places together, forming a larger imagined community in a post-national world. These connections between the Pangs in different localities reveal how the Chinese identity has extended beyond the borders of the nation state. Meanwhile, the activities in the 'homeland' have also led the Singaporean Pangs to realize the differences between themselves and their counterparts living in mainland China and thus further asserted their identity of being a Singaporean Chinese.
Deconstructing 'Japanisation': Reflections from the "Learn from Japan" Campaign in Singapore, pp. 91 - 106 THANG LENG LENG (NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE) S. K. GAN (JAPAN CULTURAL SOCIETY) In the late 1970s, like many countries dazzled by Japan's post WW2 economic success, Singapore embarked on a 'Learn from Japan' effort in the hope that Japanese success would provide a model to help the country succeed in its economic restructuring. This paper traces the developments of several initiatives during the 'learn from Japan' movement. It argues that despite the apparent zealousness towards Japan, Singapore still 'looks West' in general'. In this context, admiration towards Japan stems from its ideology of wakon yosai (Japanese spirit, Western technology), where Western practices and models are 're-conditioned' to suite an Asian context. The paper concludes with a glimpse at developments in the 1990s; although the 'learn from Japan' movement in Singapore has officially ended with Japan's economic recession, the Japanese experience is still examined. In the recent years, Japanese pop-cultural influences in Singapore and Asia have further revived the debates on 'Japanization'.
Electoral Systems, Representational Roles and Legislator Behaviour: Evidence from Hong Kong, pp. 107 - 120 IAN HOLLIDAY (TRINITY COLLEGE) MICHAEL GALLAGHER (CITY UNIVERSITY OF HONG KONG) This paper reports the results of a test of the relationship between electoral systems, role perceptions and legislator behaviour. The research is based on a study of Hong Kong's Legislative Council (LegCo), whose members are elected by a variety of routes. A sample of LegCo members were interviewed about their own perceptions of their role and their behaviour, with reference both to the way they divide their time between legislative and constituency duties, and to their representational focus. It is thus possible to assess the impact of differing electoral systems on the way they behave, and to estimate the salience of electoral system compared with role perceptions in determining a legislator's behaviour. The findings confirm important electoral system effects, though role perception effects, mediated by party, are also significant.
Japanese Linguistics Syncope in the Te-form with Auxiliary Verbs, pp. 121-138. JUNJI KAWAI (UNIVERSITY OF CANTERBURY). In Modern Japanese, deletion of 0a segment inside a word, or "syncope", is frequently observed in informal/casual speech or in fast speech, especially when the te-form of a verb, which roughly corresponds to the present participle in English, is followed by a vowel-initial auxiliary verb or by a consonant-initial auxiliary verb, /simaw/. In this paper, following a brief introduction of Optimality Theory (Prince & Smolensky 1993), I account for syncope observed in Modern Japanese by means of constraint interaction and constraint reranking. In formal speech, faithfulness constraint MAX-IO (i.e. no deletion of segments) is ranked higher than such markedness constraints as *LAB (i.e. no labials), ONSET (i.e. no onsetless syllables) and *V (i.e. no vowels), so that segments in the underlying representation are preserved in the surface form. In informal speech, on the other hand, context-free constraints MAX-C-IO (i.e. no deletion of consonants) and MAX-V-IO (i.e. no deletion of vowels) are demoted below *LAB and *V, respectively. This results in the deletion of labials and vowels from the place where such segments are not protected by highly-ranked constraints or where the deletion does not incur serious constraint violation, such as that of undominated CODACOND (i.e. coda consonants are placeless) or *COMPLEX (i.e. no complex onset or coda)
The Use of kare/kanojo in Japanese Society Today, pp. 139 - 155 YASUKO OBANA (SHINSHU UNIVERSITY) This paper aims to discuss the use of kare/kanojo (he/she) in Japanese society today, in order to elucidate the socio-psychological significance of these terms. Based on questionnaires and interviews recently surveyed in Japan, the paper will discuss what categories of people are more likely referred to as kare/kanojo, what social factors affect the use of these terms. The paper finds that compared with the time when Hinds (1975) surveyed, the use of kare/kanojo has dramatically changed, and it is notable that these terms are more frequently used and refer to more varied types of people. However, they are not merely used at random, either. Some emotional detachment toward the person referred to is needed as a trigger of the occurrence of kare/kanojo.
Graduate Research Essay A Mobile Phone of One's Own: Japan's "Generation M", pp. 178 - 194 RAQUEL HILL (UNIVERSITY OF TOKYO) Although the mobile phone has now become a symbol of globalization and is an indispensable item in our daily lives, it was Japanese youth who were amongst the first in the world to adapt this instrument and turn it into an icon. This paper examines the ways in which the youth of Japan have reappropriated the mobile phone (keitai-denwa) so that it is no longer a mere tool for "communication": unique innovations such as the attachment of straps, downloading of ring tones, and technology which incorporates e-mail, Internet, digital camera and video functions, mean that the mobile phone allows Japanese youth to express their "individuality." This paper explores the psychology behind their use of mobile phones, placing it in a larger cultural framework, and looks at claims by Japanese researchers that the mobile phone has led to changes in the way that young people relate to their friends and even their family. Contemporary media including advertising pamphlets, television campaigns, and magazine articles are analyzed in order to reveal the profound relationship between Japan's Generation "M" (mobile and moneyed) and their consumption of a tool that seems to embody all that is necessary for survival in the twenty-first century.
All articles and essays in this issue can be downloaded as PDF documents.
Guest Editorial Scrutinising Change in Island Southeast Asia SARAH TURNER (McGILL UNIVERSITY), pp. 5 - 7
Articles Balinese Music, Tourism and Globalisation HENRY JOHNSON (UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO), pp. 8 - 32 Balinese music and cultural tourism are examined in order to illustrate the invented traditions and contexts of performance in Bali, and in terms of the wider influences of globalisation. The first part of the paper explores music and tourism in terms of hotel tourism in Bali. As well as including a documentary of the development of tourism in Bali from the early years of the twentieth century, the study focuses mainly on the rise of mass tourism in the latter part of that century when Balinese culture was adapted and invented specifically for visiting tourists. For the music researcher, these new contexts of performance provide windows into understanding contemporary aspects of Balinese culture. The article also extends the study to include other influences of globalisation with a discussion of locating Bali and Balinese music in the contexts of other cultures. Here, the music researcher is challenged to question where tourism and/or travel is located in connection with music excursions by Balinese and non-Balinese performers and listeners.
Otonomi Daerah: Indonesia's Decentralisation Experiment RICHARD SEYMOUR AND SARAH TURNER (UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO & McGILL UNIVERSITY), pp. 33 - 51 This paper draws on recent and ongoing experiences in Indonesia to examine in detail the decentralisation process occurring there. After contextualising the Indonesian case, including a brief outline of the structure of the 1999 Otonomi Daerah (regional autonomy) laws, an analysis of the latter is undertaken. From this, six key problems emerge. These include the inappropriate level of autonomy, a lack of improvement in real fiscal autonomy, and insufficient finance. In addition, resource-rich regions are favoured, a number of 'grey areas' need to be resolved, and the laws have been implemented within an inappropriate time scale, raising questions regarding human resource capabilities. All are complex problems situated within an uncertain political environment, which in turn raises the question of whether Otonomi Daerah is actually working towards effective decentralisation in the Indonesian context.
Neo-Modern Islam in Suharto's Indonesia MALCOLM CONE (UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO), pp. 52 - 67 This paper is an investigation of the liberal humanist tradition in Indonesian Islam that, in the period from 1968-1999, enjoyed the support of the New Order Government of Suharto in Indonesia. The paper argues that there was an elective affinity between the objectives of the New Order Government and this liberal humanist tradition, because the defining characteristic of this governmental support was the promotion of a privatised Islam