9781474261944

The Evacuation of Civilians from Burma Analysing the 1942 Colonial Disaster

by
  • ISBN13:

    9781474261944

  • ISBN10:

    1474261949

  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2015-10-22
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
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Summary

The string of military defeats during 1942 marked the end of British hegemony in Southeast Asia, finally destroying the myth of British imperial invincibility. The Japanese attack on Burma led to a hurried and often poorly organized evacuation of Indian and European civilians from the country. The evacuation was a public humiliation for the British and marked the end of their role in Burma.

The Evacuation of Civilians from Burma investigates the social and political background to the evacuation, and the consequences of its failure. Utilizing unpublished letters, diaries, memoirs and official reports, Michael Leigh provides the first comprehensive account of the evacuation, analyzing its source in the structures of colonial society, fractured race relations and in the turbulent politics of colonial Burma.

Table of Contents

Abbreviations
Lists of Tables and Maps, and a note on Place-names
List of Illustrations
Introduction: Setting the scene
Part 1: Socio-political undercurrents
1. Facts, figures and guesstimates
2. Politics: unprepared for everything
3. The Indian Question
Part 2: Sturm, drang and mass evacuation
4. Rangoon: the big bang
5. Taungup
6. Escape by sea, river, air, road and train
7. Mandalay, Maymyo and the Oilfields
8. Myitkyina: seven days that shook a world
Part 3: Residues of pain
9. Internees and others who did not get away
10. Counting the cost
11. Conclusion: trekking towards an imperfect future
Glossary
Bibliography
Index

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