Liberal dreams: Materialism and evolutionary civil society in the projection of nation in Southeast Asia

Knapman, G 2006, 'Liberal dreams: Materialism and evolutionary civil society in the projection of nation in Southeast Asia', Asian Ethnicity, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 19-35.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Liberal dreams: Materialism and evolutionary civil society in the projection of nation in Southeast Asia
Author(s) Knapman, G
Year 2006
Journal name Asian Ethnicity
Volume number 7
Issue number 1
Start page 19
End page 35
Total pages 17
Publisher Routledge
Abstract This article focuses on the introduction of ethnicity into Southeast Asia, as a component of the nineteenth century British projection of empire. The argument is that rather than projecting a cosmopolitan vision of community, British liberalism naturalised ethnicity through the concept of civil society. This presented a global vision of societies being independent and emerging from the local landscape. These liberal notions of civil society represent an early incarnation of self-determination. The British Empire in Southeast Asia emerged within this intellectual climate, and its early construction reflected this vision. In essence, the British Empire in Southeast Asia was founded on the nebulous idea of providing self-determination to Southeast Asian nations. This notion of self-determination was a qualified concept of independence, framed around opening these civil societies to British trading hegemony.
Keyword(s) self-determination
nation
ethnicity
Malays
British Empire
liberalism
DOI - identifier 10.1080/14631360500498429
Copyright notice © 2006 Taylor and Francis
ISSN 1463-1369
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