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Department of the Languages and Cultures of South East Asia

Reading

Other study aids - Reading

Readers

Burmese chrestomathy, by W S Cornyn. 1957, Washington, ACLS. A selection of texts, colloquial and literary: narrative, dialogue, short stories, radio broadcasts, newspaper extracts, etc. Typewritten text.

Burmese glossary, by W S Cornyn and J K Musgrave. 1958, Washington, ACLS. About 11,000 entries. A glossary of words and phrases found in the Chrestomathy, sometimes also handy as a supplement to other dictionaries.

Myanmar Newspaper Reader, by Luzoe, published by Dunwoody Press, Kensington MD, USA, 1996. "Contains 52 extracts from The New Light of Myanmar and The Mirror issued during May to October 1995. Each selection consists of the Myanmar text, a vocabulary list, notes, and the English translation. There is a cumulative glossary, as well as a description of the Myanmar alphabet and appendices of numbers, months and days, abbreviations, etc."

The following three publications are from the Yangon University of Foreign Languages: a selection of passages, most in literary style, each followed by vocabulary and exercises; a selection of passages in literary style, each followed by vocabulary and exercises and a selection of passages in literary style, each followed by vocabulary and exercises. They are quite advanced, making use of a wide range of vocabulary, but may be suitable for advanced learners. The exercises are involve tasks such as filling in gaps, selecting true or false, comprehension questions etc.

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Translations

There are English translations of a number of Burmese texts, and Burmese translations of English works, which can be used as study aids by language students. For a fuller list see "Burmese literature" by A J Allott in: E U Kratz (ed.). South-East Asian languages and literatures: a bibliographical guide. 1996, London and New York, Tauris, pp 57-87. The following is a selection:

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International News:

The International carries a selection of articles taken from English language magazines and reprinted in English with a Burmese translation, alongside one or two articles written in Burmese, not translated; there is also material for learning English, such as dialogues given in Burmese and English. Available in Yangon, or by contacting them at the address above.

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Comics:

Published in English and Burmese by Sapay Beikman, Rangoon.

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Novel:

Translated by Margaret Aung-Thwin as Not out of Hate. 1991, Ohio UP.

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Short stories:

Translated by P Milne as Selected short stories of Thein Pe Myint. 1973, Cornell University.

Translated by Anna J Allott in Inked over, ripped out. 1993, PEN American Center.

Virtual Lotus: modern fiction of SE Asia, ed Teri Shaffer Yamada, pub Ann Arbor, The University of Michigan Press, 2002, contains:

  • Thadun by Ne Win Myint, trsl Patrick McCormick pp 4-10
  • Clean clear water by U Win Pe, trsl Robert Vore pp 11-17
  • An umbrella by Ma Sanda, trsl Than Than Win pp 18-24
  • An unanswerable question by Daw Ohn Khin, trsl Anna Allott pp 25 - 36

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Folk tales:

Translated as Folktales of Ludu U Hla by K, Than Tun, and Kathleen Forbes. 1994, Tun Yin Sa-pe, Mandalay (original and translation in one volume).

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Memoirs:

Translated by RHTaylor as Marxism and resistance in Burma 1942-1945. 1984, Ohio UP.

Translated by Law Yone as Saturday's son. 1975, New Haven and London, Yale UP.

Trsl as In the footsteps of Kinwun. By Retired Ambassador U Thet Tun (). 1998, Athaingawaing Press, Rangoon (both versions in one volume).

Trsl as Bilingual essays. By Retired Ambassador U Thet Tun . 1999, Meik Kaung Press, Rangoon (both versions in one volume).

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Biography:

1958. Translated by Sein Tu as The caged ones. 1986, Bangkok, Tamarind Press.

1960, Mandalay, Kyi-bwa-ye Press. Translated by Kathleen Forbes and Dr Than Tun as The victim. 1973-76, Mandalay, Kyi-bwa-ye Press.

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Life stories:

(2 vols) 1993, Yangon, Lin-lin Sa-pe. Translated by Ohnmar Khin and Sein Kyaw Hlaing as On the road to Mandalay: tales of ordinary people. 1996, Bangkok, White Orchid Press.

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Events of 1988:

Outrage: Burma's struggle for democracy, by Bertil Lintner. 1990, White Lotus, Bangkok. Translated as 1990, Peacock Press, Edinburgh.

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Promotional material:

English version: City of Yangon: modernization record, Yangon City Development Committee, Yangon, 1990.

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Speeches and essays:

Freedom from fear, by Aung San Suu Kyi. 1991, Penguin. Translated as 1993, La Haule Books, Jersey.

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Speeches:

Translated as Scheming and activities of the Burma Communist Party Politburo (in same vol). Also other parallel Burmese and English versions of similar material from the same source.

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Newspaper feature articles

Letters from Burma, by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. 1997, Penguin. Trsl as Pub byVoice of Burma Group, Apr 1998

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Sermons:

Translated by Roger Bischoff as Selected discourses of Webu Sayadaw. 1992, International Meditation Centre, Calne, Wiltshire.

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Chronicles:

Extract from the
Translated by Anna Allott, with Burmese text and explanatory notes and introduction, as The end of the first Anglo-Burmese war: The Burmese chronicle account of how the 1826 Treaty of Yandabo was negotiated. 1994, Chulalongkorn University Press, Bangkok.

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Buddha's life:

Translated by C Bennett as Life of Gaudama. 1853, Jnl Amer Or Soc vol 3 pp 1-164. Also Translated by M Edwardes as A life of the Buddha. 1959, Folio, London.

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Precedents for rulers:

1781. Translated by E Bagshawe as The Mani-yadanabon of Shin Sandalinka, 1981, New York, Cornell University, Southeast Asia Program.

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Poems:

Translated by Win Pe as The sea of the 550 jatakas, in the same volume.

Five poems by different authors. Translated by Bosley and Okell in The Elek book of oriental verse, ed. Keith Bosley. 1979, London, Paul Elek, pp120-125

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Students at SOAS have access to a set of texts provided with study aids (notes, vocabularies, translations etc) so far unpublished. The texts include short stories and novels, extracts from memoirs, magazine interviews, published speeches, comics, and personal correspondence.