'This is a truly excellent work, both insightful and highly original - a very rare text indeed. It constitutes a major and highly detailed contribution to the field with specific reference to the way in which the idea of "Southeast Asia" emerged as the product of discursive construction during the colonial era. This is a critique of Orientalism that has long been central to academic debates in the field of Asian and African studies, but which has received relatively less attention in reference to Southeast Asia. As a result, this book makes a landmark contribution to our understanding of the detail and effects of Orientalist discourse in the region. Strongly recommended for its engaging readability, this is one of the best and most engaging texts on the region that has appeared for some time, providing a rich and vital tool with which to bring the region into wider conversation with critical theory and postcolonial studies'
Professor Rachel Harrison,
Centre for Southeast Asian Studies
School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London