Racial Capitalism and Peasant Insurgency in Colonial Myanmar

May 9, 2022 @ 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm

with Jonathan Saha, Department of History, University of Durham

Register at:  https://yorku.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwqf-6hqTstGt24WIuIRkHQraZv67s5Q3W-

The Hsaya San Rebellion swept through colonial Myanmar between 1930 and 1932. It took eighteen months and over seven-thousand Indian Army troops to suppress. Triggered by acute pressures in the agrarian economy compounded by a global fall in rice prices, the violence of the revolt cannot be fully explained by this crisis alone. Bands of peasant rebels massacred Indians; not only moneylenders but cattle-herders, who were themselves a precarious and marginal rural community. These massacres are not easy to interpret. Revisiting the insurgency through the growing literature on racial capitalism provides a framework for understanding peasants’ racialized violence.

This event is part of the Burma Past and Present: Religion, Ethnicity and Power, a series of readings and discussion of works in progress. We will be reading and discussing work in progress with the author. Please email turnera@yorku.ca to receive a copy of the reading.


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