Year published :2008

Pages :374 pp.

Size :15x23 cm.

ISBN: 9789748276632

Living in a Globalized World: Ethnic Minorities in the Greater Mekong Subregion

by Mekong Press

Edited by Don McCaskill, Prasit Leepreecha, and He Shaoying

Indigenous peoples in Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, and Yunnan (in China) live in a region of massive change, fuelled by the rise of China, the end of war or sanctions, open door policies, and regional integration. Policies aimed at minorities or developing upland areas, as well as transformations wrought by migration, highways, hydropower, the Internet and other media, and tourism are all impacting the cultures of the Akha, Lisu, Karen, Dai, Mien, Khmu, and numerous other groups in the Mekong region.

To what degree and exactly how are groups such as the Mien, Dai, and Akha in various countries holding on to their traditions, rituals, and identities? What happens to these when they move into ethnically mixed lowland areas, convert to a world religion, or go to school? How are they adapting to their new circumstances? Are there common strategies emerging across the groups? Are new identities emerging, for instance, within the Hmong diaspora?

This book is the result of an innovative cross-border comparative project jointly conducted by an international team of scholars to address these and other questions. The authors focus on a variety of phenomena including religious conversion, the media, healing practices, rituals, hydropower projects, and tourist-oriented ethnic enclaves. A closing chapter is a theoretically informed study of the transformation of Hmong culture and identity, with insights that may well be applicable to the other groups.

This is a companion volume to Challenging the Limits: Indigenous Peoples of the Mekong Region, edited by Prasit Leepreecha, Don McCaskill, and Kwanchewan Buadaeng (Mekong Press 2008).

About the Editor(s)

Don McCaskill is Chair of the Department of Indigenous Studies at Trent University in Canada. Prasit Leepreecha is Researcher at the Social Research Institute of Chiang Mai University, Thailand. He Shaoying is Professor and Vice President of Yunnan Nationalities University