Everyday Justice for Muslims in Mawlamyine: Subjugation and Skilful Navigation

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This article, based on ethnographic fieldwork in Myanmar 2015–2017, explores the everyday interactions between Muslim and Buddhist residents in an urban ward in Mawlamyine, the capital city of Mon State. The focus is on tensions and injustices, analysed through the prism of everyday dispute resolution and survival strategies. I discuss occurring forms of injustice that are not only re-enforced by anti-Muslim nationalist discourses and global trends (including the role of social media), but also mediated by local and personal agendas, and efforts to mitigate open violence. Competition for power and insecurities in the current transition play into these dynamics. In analysing the tactics used to navigate the socio-political environment that interlocutors face in their everyday, I contribute to a broader understanding of the complexities of local politics and Muslim–Buddhist relations in Myanmar and how this affects (in)access to justice.
Introduction
Original languageEnglish
Article number3
JournalIndependent Journal of Burmese Scholarship
Volume1
Issue2
Number of pages29
Publication statusPublished - May 2018

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