Many academics who work on Southeast Asia have a natural interest in the problems that can emerge for those who fall foul of the region’s governments. Scholars working on a range of countries, including Indonesia, Thailand and Burma, have faced significant challenges on occasions when their work rubs up against countervailing political priorities. Readers of New Mandala know some of these stories only too well.
With Southeast Asian matters in mind I was interested to read that a group of 13 academics (all contributors to the pictured edited volume) were banned from traveling to China because of their scholarly work on the troubled western province of Xinjiang. Bloomberg is carrying a long article on this fascinating topic. It includes much of potential relevance to students and scholars of Southeast Asia. The comments from Gardner Bovingdon right at the end of the article are particularly worthy of consideration.