Reframing Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asia: Transnational Connections, Comparisons and Mobilities

in Asian Journal of Social Science
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See Iriye (2007, 2013), Tyrell (2009) and Saunier (2013). Transnational history has been seen by some as a subset of global history. The differences between the global and transnational were often “tenuous”, with much overlap between them in the way they came to challenge the nation-state as the analytical frame and were very much concerned with broader humanistic themes (Iriye, 2013: 12). Transnational history seemed to distinguish from global history in terms of how it could cover themes and forces that are “cross-national” but not global, as in regional communities, interregional migrations, diseases and environmental problems (Iriye, 2007: 3). Others, like Saunier, have argued that transnational history is not so much a new form of history, but a new perspective and approach.


James Scott (2009), in adapting the concept of Zomia advanced by van Schendel, had also proposed an alternative analytical frame encompassing the frontier and upland regions of different states in Central, Eastern and Southeast Asia and the highland populations vis-à-vis their relations with plains populations and the states built around the latter.


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