Experiments with Marxism-Leninism in Cold War Southeast Asia

Experiments with Marxism-Leninism in Cold War Southeast Asia

Edited by: Matthew Galway orcid, Marc H. Opper

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One of the most contentious theatres of the global conflict between capitalism and communism was Southeast Asia. From the 1920s until the end of the Cold War, the region was racked by international and internal wars that claimed the lives of millions and fundamentally altered societies in the region for generations. Most of the 11 countries that compose Southeast Asia were host to the development of sizable communist parties that actively (and sometimes violently) contested for political power. These parties were the object of fierce repression by European colonial powers, post-independence governments and the United States. Southeast Asia communist parties were also the object of a great deal of analysis both during and after these conflicts.

This book brings together a host of expert scholars, many of whom are either Southeast Asia–based or from the countries under analysis, to present the most expansive and comprehensive study to date on ideological and practical experiments with Marxism-Leninism in Southeast Asia. The bulk of this edited volume presents the contents of these revolutionary ideologies on their own terms and their transformations in praxis by using primary source materials that are free of the preconceptions and distortions of counterinsurgent narratives. A unifying strength of this work is its focus on using primary sources in the original languages of the insurgents themselves.


ISBN (print):
ISBN (online):
Publication date:
Sep 2022
Asian Studies Series Monograph 16
ANU Press
Asian Studies Series
Arts & Humanities: History; Social Sciences: Politics & International Studies
Southeast Asia

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Part One

  1. ‘One eye in the chain of the Asian movement’: Muslims adapting Marx in the Dutch East Indies, 1927–42 (PDF, 0.3MB)Lin Hongxuan doi
  2. ‘The most dissolute and dishonest’ Khmer to aid China: Hu Nim and indigenising the Maoist ideological system, 1955–77 (PDF, 1.4MB)Matthew Galway doi
  3. Buddhist socialism and national identity in colonial and postwar Burma: An analysis of U Nu’s political thought (PDF, 0.3MB)Khine Thant Su doi
  4. Heavier than Mount Banahaw: ‘Five Golden Rays’ and the ‘Filipinisation’ of Maoism (PDF, 0.4MB)Ramon Guillermo, Teo Marasigan, Amado Anthony G. Mendoza III and Dominic Sy doi
  5. Partai Republik Indonesia: Communist exiles and their noncommunist approaches to anticolonialism (PDF, 0.3MB)Kankan Xie doi

Part Two

  1. Forging the masses in Malaya: Mass mobilisation, the united front and revolutionary violence in Malaya, 1939–51 (PDF, 0.3MB)Marc H. Opper doi
  2. Recycling violence: The theory and practice of reeducation camps in postwar Vietnam (PDF, 0.3MB)Hoang Minh Vu doi
  3. Return to armed revolution: The Pathet Lao and the Chinese Communist Party on paths to national liberation (PDF, 0.3MB)Nicholas R. Zeller doi
  4. ‘Victory of the aggregate strength of the era’: Lê Duẩn, Vietnam and the three revolutionary tidal waves (PDF, 0.3MB)Khuê Diệu Đỗ doi
  5. Becoming Marxist: Ethnic Hmong in the Communist Party of Thailand (PDF, 0.5MB)Ian G. Baird doi

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