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Being and Becoming KachinHistories Beyond the State in the Borderworlds of Burma$
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Mandy Sadan

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780197265550

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197265550.001.0001

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Transnational symbols in national spaces

Transnational symbols in national spaces

The Ideological Transformation of the Manau

(p.406) 9 Transnational symbols in national spaces
Being and Becoming Kachin

Mandy Sadan

British Academy

This chapter considers the manau as both a symbol of modern Kachin ethno-nationalism and as a vector for understanding some of its local, regional, and historical complexities. It considers the recent developments of these festivals in India, Burma, Yunnan, and Thailand as a way of understanding how local and regional dynamics affect the relationships between Singpho, Kachin, and Jingpo communities across the region. The chapter begins by explaining the modern emergence of the manau festival from the colonial period onwards, looking in detail at the aesthetic symbolism of the form in different contexts. This enables us to appreciate the constantly evolving and discursive nature of this form by exploring multiple events separated by both distance and time. It suggests that the manau has managed to attain and sustain its relevance because of its transformative capacities.

Keywords:   manau, ritual, posts, aesthetic, festival

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