Government and Nationalism in Southeast Asia

By Rupert Emerson; Lennox A. Mills et al. | Go to book overview

1. INTRODUCTION

A comparative study of the governments of southeast Asia is more provocative of contrasts than similarities. The differences between them are found not only in the present form of the Administrations but also in their historical evolution, the relative importance attached to the various social services and the attitude toward the development of native self-government. Yet at the same time the United States, Great Britain, Holland and France have all tried to combine political concessions and the improvement of the material condition of the peoples under their rule with the. preservation of the economic interests of the ruling power. That the same general policy should be interpreted in such divergent manners is one of the clearest indications of the profound differences between the colonial policies of the four Western powers.

The most distinctive feature of American policy has been the emphasis placed upon the very rapid development of selfgovernment. The first step was taken only a few years after the conquest of the Philippines by the establishment of self-government in the municipalities and provinces. The actual power of the municipal councils and provincial boards was slight; but in 1907 a legislature composed of elected Filipino representatives was given partial control over legislation, taxation and expenditure.

The Jones Act of 1916, and even more the way in which it was carried out in practice, extended these powers and gave the Philippine legislature a considerable degree of control over the executive. The Tydings-McDuffie Act and the Commonwealth set up in 1935 in accordance with its provisions established internal self-government, subject to the wide emergency powers of intervention which were vested in the President of the United States. In a generation the form of government progressed from a backward and not very intelligent Spanish autocracy to something approaching a democracy of the American type. The salient feature has been the speed with which this transformation has been carried out; and this in turn has sprung

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Government and Nationalism in Southeast Asia
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • The Institute of Pacific Relations iv
  • Title Page v
  • Foreward vii
  • Editorial Note xi
  • Contents xiii
  • Part I - Introduction 1
  • Part II - The Governments of Southeast Asia 37
  • Author's Note 38
  • 1. Introduction 39
  • Ii. the Philippines 53
  • Iii. Burma 70
  • Iv. British Malaya 78
  • V. Hongkong 92
  • Vi. the Netherlands Indies 97
  • Vii. French Indo-China 107
  • Viii. Taiwan 113
  • Ix. Thailand 118
  • Part III - Nationalism and Nationalist Movements in Southeast Asia 125
  • I. Introduction: Comparative Nationalisms 127
  • Ii. the Philippines 145
  • Iii. Burma 159
  • Iv. British Malaya 169
  • V. the Netherlands Indies 182
  • Vi. French Indo-China 198
  • Vii. Thailand 211
  • Index 223
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