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Trials in Burma

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  19 ratings  ·  6 reviews
"This is an unpretentious book, but it brings out with unusual clearness the dilemma that faces every official in an empire like our own." George Orwell
TRIALS IN BURMA recounts Maurice Collis' experiences as a district magistrate in Rangoon in the late 1920s. The book recounts his gradual realisation that far from administering an impartial system of justice, he is expecte
Paperback, 226 pages
Published May 29th 2008 by Faber Faber (first published 1938)
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Aug 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: autobiography, burma
Amazingly, I found reading this memoir so captivatingly and literally devourable that I long to read his other remaining two entitled Into Hidden Burma and The Journal Outward; this title being the second in the series. In fact, I think, one of the reasons is that, nearly like his Siamese White (DD Books 1982), he outlined his contents into seven chapters, chapters one-three equally having five topics while chapter four having ten, chapter five having four, chapter six having three and chapter s ...more
May 06, 2013 rated it liked it
This is an interesting read. See the Wikipedia entry for the details. Two interesting things are surprising. Firstly the author's complete failure to appreciate the significance of the Saya San rebellion, an important anti-colonial event. Secondly the author's description of the prison riot where so many died is so uninvolved. Gives a good indication of the colonial attitude to the colonised.
Simon Rawlence
Mar 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Re-united with this treasure after over 50 years. I last found it as a teenager in my father in laws library. He was an ex Burma hand. Out there straight from Cambridge and living in a chummery in the 1930s. then working upcountry for Imperial Tobacco. Then in WW2 commanding a company of Sikhs against the Japanese.
But back to Maurice Collis. This book is a healthy counterweight to Orwell's Burmese days. Firstly it is not fiction but court cases which especially expose the differing attitudes to
Aug 12, 2020 rated it it was ok
If you are interested in India and the Burmese under the Indian Diarchy (combined government of Britain and India) between 1928 and 1937, then this will probably be a very interesting read indeed. Unfortunaly I am not so interested.
Glen Thickett
Oct 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An old book from a different time. British civil service in Burma between the World Wars. Written with a clear eye, good memory, and with humour.
Jul 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: myanmar
Offers great insights about social conflicts that are still alive in Myanmar today.
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