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Nationalist movements in Burma, 1920-1940 : changing patterns of leadership, from Sangha to Laity

Maung, U Maung

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PART ONE THE EARLY PERIOD Chapter 1 The Original Political Movements This chapter traces the origin of politics under Colonial rule, its relation to the Buddhist revivalism of the beginning of the 1900s; and the foundation of political organisation through the YMBA (the Young Men Buddhist Association), within the framework of the British socio-political setting. The Burmese political movement began after an impetus had been gained with cautious Buddhist modernist civic activities that...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorMaung, U Maung
dc.date.accessioned2016-12-09T01:00:14Z
dc.date.available2016-12-09T01:00:14Z
dc.date.copyright1976
dc.identifier.otherb1292580
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/111335
dc.description.abstractPART ONE THE EARLY PERIOD Chapter 1 The Original Political Movements This chapter traces the origin of politics under Colonial rule, its relation to the Buddhist revivalism of the beginning of the 1900s; and the foundation of political organisation through the YMBA (the Young Men Buddhist Association), within the framework of the British socio-political setting. The Burmese political movement began after an impetus had been gained with cautious Buddhist modernist civic activities that were aimed at countering the effects of the imposition of foreign social fabric by the British Government, the extensive economic activities of British and allied business enterprises, and aggressive activities of the foreign Christian missions in the field of education. The Burmese Buddhist missions and societies were few but were determined in their chosen task of maintaining the tradition of Buddhist ethos and the way of life among the educated towns-people. The YMBA on the other hand came to be organised mainly with secret political ambitions, but had to camouflage these with civic and educational activities for some years in order to survive British Government suspicions. However it could not remain thus long and in 1917 open indulgence in politics took place with the advent of Montague- Chelmsford reforms. Chapter II Political Agitation Begins This chapter shows the sangha (Buddhist monk) leadership especially in political agitation initiated by U Ottama and the young dhamnakatikas he trained. Though U Ottama's political leadership was admired by most people, his spirit was exemplified most by the youthful student leaders of the Rangoon University Strike of 1920, the first strike in Burma. The spirit of challenge of authority of the British Government by the student boycott spread to the people and the GCBA (the renamed YMBA and allied associations) which also protested against the Dyarchy reforms and boycotted the government. Chapter III The Sangha Takes Over the GCBA In this chapter the stage by stage absorption of political power of the lay leaders of the GCBA by the sangha is shown and explained. Also the increasingly radical policies and aggressive agitation led by the sangha, and which came to be espoused enthusiastically by the people is covered, as well as the resulting rejection by the latter of the original founders of politics and more able and moderate lay political leaders. Chapter IV A Decade of Repression The results of radical and aggressive political agitation led by the sangha in the GCGS and the GCBA was an increasing and harsh repression by the Eritish authorities in all spheres of life of the Eurnan whether lay or religious. The sufferings of the people and the bitterness these spread among the rural population is detailed at some length in here. Chapter V The Decline This chapter shows the degradation and fragmentation of the original political movements, the GCBA and the GCSS. The reputations of both the lay and sangha leaders became tarnished; the organisations split asunder repeatedly; the leaders dissipated their credibility and authority in the populace. The public turned away from their political leaders disappointed and discouraged; disillusionment of politics set in. The great movements and the super-human sacrifices of the sangha leaders, and valourous activities of the rural public became wasted. THE NEW REVOLUTIONARY FORCES Chapter VI The Dawn of the Turbulent Thirties It describes the social, economic and political situation of Burma at the entry into the 1930s. The circumstances gave birth to a new outlook, new political consciousness, and new nationalist activities by the new crop of University students in early 1930s. Chapter VII The Peasant Revolt The Saya San Rebellion of 1930-32 is covered in some detail here to illustrate it as the natural finale of the nationalist struggles of the 1920s and the boycott of the British Government by staunch GCBA rural public who suffered persecution most. The causes of the rebellion was also covered in detail in order to refute the British official propaganda that it was a result of the Burma's fondness for superstition and violence. Chapter VIII The Gestation Period The whole chapter is devoted to the nature of the new Buddhist revivalism of the 1930s, its nature and tbe principal personalities and their main movements. The effects of the new revivalism on the people of Burma, and the youth is described briefly. Politics had become a neglected activity if not also a discredited one. Chapter IX The Time of Tests In this chapter the struggle of the new nationalists to clarify their own aims and role, of winning support of the people, and their main thrust in confronting the foreign ruler is shown. The nature of the new leaders, their principal activities, the University life of 1930s, its atmosphere of renaissance, authoritarian rule by the authorities, the revolt against these by the KUSU led by Ko Nu and friends, the University Strike of 1930, its sweeping success in winning public support, the revival of nationalism among the people, their reawakening of self-confidence in political agitation are covered briefly* The new nationalists became fully established in public esteem, and their systematic organisation of machineries of leadership and management of the people against the Government by establishing nation-wide student unions, widening and intensification of the activities of the DA, are also seen in this chapter Chapter X The First Challenge In it the nature of student nationalist leadership, the mode of operations, and their convictions and personal code is given more substance. The new wave of agitation in the student actions and then the role of the students and Thakins in the first struggle against the rulers in a nation-wide strikes in 1938-39 are covered. In this chapter also the violent split of the DA, its consequences, the failing leadership of the DA and student entry into the DA to rejuvenate the failing nationalist struggle and the DA itself are shown. Chapter XI The General Strike (The First Challenge Continued) In it, the origin and actual course of the BE 1300 Revolution or the General Strikes of 1938-39 are detailed. It began as an unauthorised strike by oil fields labour, and also the lack of preparation by the DA to take it up was shown; but the persistence of oil fields labour leaders, Thakins all of them, forced the HQrs DA to lead them and the nation in an unprepared struggle against the British. The failing strikers' march to Kangoon and the DA's appeal to student leaders to help; the student involvement and the sacrifice of young lives and careers is shown. From the DA split of June 1938 the Thakins had become spent force, so soon after their fire-brand political agitation; it shows how the students emerged as the only revolutionary force that was actually able to lead and did led the people from 1938. Chapter XII Preparation for the Second Challenge The coming of the Second World War, the effects on the Burmese body politic, and the activities of the nationalists are detailed in this chapter. The founding of the Burma Freedom Bloc, its main activities, the role of the students in leading and uniting Burma, the DA and its inner conflicts, the origin of the Burma Communist Party, the founding and conduct of the Underground I against the British, the Contacts with Japan, the Cooperation with the Japanese Military, and the initiating of the first armed struggle with foreign aid can be seen. Chapter XIII The Conclusions Here the main purpose of the thesis, and the justification for the substance of the writing, the actual undeniable logic of the motivations and the consequences of each stage of the organisation, management, and leadership of the struggle against the British Government are shown. The facts stated in the first 12 chapters are now correlated and summarised and offered to the reader, the irrefutable conclusions of the author. The Appendices All of them further illustrate the author's conclusions with more detailed supporting evidence from the newspapers and other sources. Almost every appendix is a historical document.
dc.format.extent1 v
dc.language.isoen
dc.subject.lcshNationalism Burma
dc.subject.lcshBurma History 1824-1948
dc.subject.lcshBurma Politics and government
dc.titleNationalist movements in Burma, 1920-1940 : changing patterns of leadership, from Sangha to Laity
dc.typeThesis (Masters)
local.contributor.supervisorLoofs, H. H. E.
local.contributor.supervisorTerwiel, B. J.
dcterms.valid1976
local.description.notesThis thesis has been made available through exception 200AB to the Copyright Act.
local.type.degreeMaster by research (Masters)
dc.date.issued1976
local.contributor.affiliationDepartment of Asian Civilizations
local.identifier.doi10.25911/5d7636c7ec401
dc.date.updated2016-11-25T00:01:24Z
local.mintdoimint
CollectionsOpen Access Theses

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