Where China Meets India
Burma and the New Crossroads of Asia
By Thant Myint-U
(Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Hardcover, 9780374299071, 384pp.)
Publication Date: September 13, 2011
List Price: $27.00*
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Thant Myint-U's "Where China Meets India "is a vivid, searching, timely book about the remote region that is suddenly a geopolitical center of the world.
From their very beginnings, China and India have been walled off from each other: by the towering summits of the Himalayas, by a vast and impenetrable jungle, by hostile tribes and remote inland kingdoms stretching a thousand miles from Calcutta across Burma to the upper Yangtze River.
Soon this last great frontier will vanish--the forests cut down, dirt roads replaced by superhighways, insurgencies crushed--leaving China and India exposed to each other as never before. This basic shift in geography--as sudden and profound as the opening of the Suez Canal--will lead to unprecedented connections among the three billion people of Southeast Asia and the Far East.
What will this change mean? Thant Myint-U is in a unique position to know. Over the past few years he has traveled extensively across this vast territory, where high-speed trains and gleaming new shopping malls are now coming within striking distance of the last far-flung rebellions and impoverished mountain communities. And he has explored the new strategic centrality of Burma, where Asia's two rising, giant powers appear to be vying for supremacy.
At once a travelogue, a work of history, and an informed look into the future, "Where China Meets India "takes us across the fast-changing Asian frontier, giving us a masterful account of the region's long and rich history and its sudden significance for the rest of the world.
Thant Myint-U was educated at Harvard and Cambridge Universities and later taught history for several years as a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. He has also served on three United Nations peacekeeping operations, in Cambodia and the former Yugoslavia, as well as with the United Nations Secretariat in New York. He is the author of a personal history of Burma, The River of Lost Footsteps.
Myanmar mostly makes news in the West these days with blood and iron, when the brutal military regime cracks down on monks and others protesting for democracy. Host Scott Simon chats with Thant Myint-U, author of Where China Meets India: Burma and the New Crossroads of Asia, who says the country may have a bright and bold future as a bridge between China and India's growing economies. More at NPR.org
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