SOAS University of London

Department of History, School of History, Religions & Philosophies

Maria Kekki

BA General History (University of Helsinki), MA General History (University of Helsinki)
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Ms Maria Kekki
Email address:
Thesis title:
"Ethnicity and social identification in 14th-18th central mainland Southeast Asia"
Year of Study:
4th Year
Internal Supervisors

PhD Research

The dissertation focuses on problematising the concept of ethnicity in the history of early modern Southeast Asia, and aims to clarify the categories and contents of social identification during the period by using critically selected source material. Although early modern Southeast Asian history has generally been written through colonialist, nationalist and postmodern discourses assuming an underlying attachment to ethnic identity, the research points out instead the absence of ethnicity before the end of the 18th century and redirects attention to the prevalent categories of social identification in the sources, including social hierarchy, location, kinship and age groups, as well as gender.


  • Strategies and consequences of intercultural exchange in Southeast Asia c. 1500-1800,     Cambridge 2009.
  • Continuity and Change: (Re)conceptualising Power in Southeast Asia, Cambridge 2009.
  • The 10th International Conference on Thai Studies, Bangkok 2008.
  • Symposium of Mon Studies, Bangkok 2007.
  • The 5th Euroseas Conference, Naples 2007.
  • A workshop on Sensory History of Southeast Asia, London 2007.