A view on the coup from the unruly edges of Myanmar

In this piece, drawing on fieldwork experiences in Myanmar, Tomas Cole of the Department of Social Anthropology at Stockholm University warns about the skewed understanding of the country and the coup that results when the analytic (or journalistic) gaze is too narrow. He dreams of a future federal and democratic Myanmar, a disbanded Tatmadaw and genuine peace for all.

By Tomas Cole

Making Sense of Military Violence in Myanmar

In this piece, drawing on five decades as a Myanmar scholar, Mikael Gravers, sheds light on the historical roots and rationale of the Myanmar military making the contemporary challenges faced by the resistance abundantly clear…

By Mikael Gravers

Burmese women show a new way out of the military darkness

Since the military coup on February 1, the streets of Myanmar’s cities have been transformed from the organized chaos of small tea shops, vegetable stalls and street vendors into a battle zone. Barricades that people have put together to protect themselves from the army and police in the streets from replaced the otherwise familiar buzz of taxis and motorcycles. Yet in early March, the many barricades of sandbags, rocks and junk were supplemented by endless rows of ‘htamein’ […]

By Hannah Russell & Tomas Max Martin

The mustard seeds: Considering the role of dissenting security officers breaking ranks

As the brutality of the coup unfolds, the obedience – and disobedience – of Myanmar security personnel is intensely at stake. What makes Myanmar men and women in uniform shoot and brutally attack unarmed protesters in the street and subject them to indignity and cruelty in detention? And what makes them desist such actions, disobey direct orders, oppose entrenched professional sub-cultures of violence and break ranks to join the civil disobedience movement […]

By Tomas Max Martin

Discovering law’s violence in post-coup Myanmar

The law in Myanmar has always been enmeshed in power and ideology, contestation, conflict and conquest – at the interplay between local and international actors – and continues to be so. The recent coup marks the distinct reassertion of the military as the primary actor in shaping, harnessing and wielding law’s power […]

By Ergun Cakal

This is how the military took power so fast

The Myanmar military had never laid down their arms and returned to the barracks. For our colleagues in the country the coup of February 1st 2021 likely came as less of a surprise than to us outside analysts. For they know the military’s undemocratic and authoritarian history […]

By Andrew M. Jefferson, Tomas Max Martin, Hannah Russell & Ergun Cakal

Sensing Myanmar – researcher reflections on the coup (An introduction to the essay series)

This piece – which was originally published via https://teacircleoxford.com/ – launches an online essay series aimed at illuminating the coup and its aftermath from a research perspective. It is driven by an intense desire to put knowledge to work in the interests of participatory democracy and justice with a focus on state formative processes and imprisonment […]

By Andrew M. Jefferson, Tomas Max Martin, Hannah Russell & Ergun Cakal

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