ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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‘Burma’ All the Way

My Conscience: An Exile’s Memoir of Burma by U Kyaw Win, Eugene, Oregon: Resource Publications, 2016; pp 254, 1,886 (paperback).

To be expelled from one’s native land, or to live away by compulsion, is the experience from which emerge many narratives in our time. Exile, immigrant, émigré and refugee: the terms overlap their burdens of displacement and violation. Narratives of loss are often of aspirations; power-mongers will not countenance, and others understand all too seldom or too late. Exiles from Burma have been tucked away in Indian society for almost five decades, unseen and unheard of, as New Delhi accommodated the reality of military rule in what became “Myanmar” in 1989. This despite the ethnic cleansing of lakhs of people of Indian origin, expelled earlier as boatloads of refugees left the only land they had known, taking with them that love of soil which is the hallmark of every Burmese. This book is a story of another exiled life, rooted in Burma, linked to India, and lived-out in the US (United States), and across the globe. It has been a life of conscience, driven by a single unrelenting cause: Burma as a free, democratic and inclusive society. No political correctness here—it is “Burma” all the way, the author dismissing the generals’ claim that “Myanmar” correctly encompasses all the inhabitants of his polyglot country.

Opportunity Cost of a Conscience

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Updated On : 1st Feb, 2021

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