Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Event: Meet-the-Author session with Tash Aw

Select Books is pleased to invite you to a Meet-the-Author session with Tash Aw on Saturday, 13 April 2013, at 4:30pm.

Tash Aw was born in Taipei to Malaysian parents. He grew up in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and moved to England to attend university. 

His first novel, The Harmony Silk Factory, published in 2005, won both the Whitbread Award and the regional Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Novel that year, and was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. 

His second novel, Map of the Invisible World, set in post-Independence Indonesia and Malaysia, was published in 2009. His fiction has been translated into 23 languages.

Tash's third novel is Five Star Billionaire. In this stunning new novel, Aw charts the journey of migrant Malaysia workers in the new China, counterpointing their adventures with the old life they have left behind in Malaysia. The result is a brilliant examination of the migrations that are shaping the new city experiences all over the world, and their effect on myriad individual lives. 

Saturday, April 13, 2013
4:30 pm

Select Books
51, Armenian Street
Singapore 179939
Tel: 6337 9319

Monday, March 18, 2013

Event: imag(in)e sea #002, by Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani - Thai Photography: Between Reality and Ambiguity

Photos from the second talk in the imag(in)e sea series, imag(in)e sea #002, by Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani, titled Thai Photography: Between Reality and Ambiguity, held on Friday, March 15, 2013 at 7:30pm.


Monday, March 11, 2013

Event: CakapHeritage - Let’s Talk About Heritage! with Ann Wee

Photos from CakapHeritage - Let’s Talk About Heritage! with Ann Wee held at Select Books on Saturday, March 9, 2013, at 3pm.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Books on War in Asia

This is a selection of titles on wars in Asia:

The Wars for Asia 1911-1949 by S.C.M. Paine. The Wars for Asia, 1911-1949 shows that the Western treatment of World War II, the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Chinese Civil War as separate events misrepresents their overlapping connections and causes. The Chinese Civil War precipitated a long regional war between China and Japan that went global in 1941 when the Chinese found themselves fighting a civil war within a regional war within an overarching global war. The global war that consumed Western attentions resulted from Japan's peripheral strategy to cut foreign aid to China by attacking Pearl Harbour and Western interests throughout the Pacific in 1941. S. C. M. Paine emphasizes the fears and ambitions of Japan, China and Russia, and the pivotal decisions that set them on a collision course in the 1920s and 1930s. The resulting wars together yielded a viscerally anti-Japanese and unified Communist China, the still-angry rising power of the early 21st century.

An End to a War: A Japanese Soldier's Experience of the 1945 Death Marches of North Borneo by Ueno Itsuyoshi, and translated from the Japanese by Mika Reilly. The 1945 North Borneo Death Marches of Allied prisoners of war and their Japanese military guards leave a horror epic in human memory. Only 6 POWs survived. One of the few surviving guards wrote this account in 1946 as a therapy for his mental breakdown. Publication was not intended. He tells of horrors and cruelties, life-saving and life-destroying deeds by prisoners, guards, and the local population; and then of his slow return to life in Japan. Accepting an offer of a pilgrimage return to North Borneo in 1980, he tells of the memorial service at Tawau and graveyards in Sandakan and his feelings on return to places of bitterness and tragedy. With editor's endnotes, black-and-white photographs, index and the Japanese text.

Historical Dictionary of the Indochina War (1945-1954): An International and Interdisciplinary Approach by Christopher E Goscha. This remarkable work will for long remain a major reference point for anyone concerned with the 1945-54 Indochina War. This had many long-term results including the end of any overt French colonial structures in Indochina. Included are: a chronology, black-and-white photo gallery, maps, overview introductory essays, an apparently exhaustive encyclopaedic dictionary, bibliography, and names, places, events and general indexes.

The Cold War In East Asia, 1945-1991 edited by by Tsuyoshi Hasegawa. The Cold War in East Asia studies Asia as a second front in the Cold War, examining how the six powers-the United States, the Soviet Union, China, Japan, and North and South Korea-interacted one another and forged the conditions that were distinct from the Cold War in Europe. The contributors are among the foremost historians of the new Cold War history, and this book draws on a wide array of newly available archival information in many languages, with particular strength in the use of Russian and Chinese archival material. The Cold War in East Asia shows how as a second front the Cold War in East Asia influenced the shape of the Cold War's first front-the East-West confrontation centering in Europe-and third front in the developing world. Each chapter, while focused on particular countries and particular timespans, situates its story within a broad overview. And the volume stresses the uniqueness of the region's historical experience and explains how it serves as the background to some of the key conflicts in East Asia today. Indexed.

The Korean War by Max Hastings. On 25 June 1950, the invasion of South Korea by the Communist North launched one of the bloodiest conflicts of the last century. The seemingly limitless power of the Chinese-backed North was thrown against the ferocious firepower of the UN-backed South in a war that can be seen today as the stark prelude to Vietnam. Max Hastings drew on first-hand accounts of those who fought on both sides to produce this vivid and incisive reassessment of the Korean War, bringing the military and human dimensions into sharp focus. Critically acclaimed on publication, "The Korean War" remains the best narrative history of this conflict. With bibliography, references and index.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

imag(in)e sea #002 - Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani - Thai Photography: Between Reality and Ambiguity

Select Books is pleased to invite you to the second talk in the imag(in)e sea series. imag(in)e sea #002, by Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani, titled Thai Photography: Between Reality and Ambiguity, will be held on Friday, March 15, 2013 at 7:30pm.

imag(in)e sea #002: Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani
Thai Photography: Between Reality and Ambiguity 
Since its appearance during the time of King Monkut (Rama IV), photography in Thailand has been adopted as a medium receptive to selected realities, being one of the means to authenticate and dignify the royalty. In the contemporary era, the axis has shifted from the pure representation of the monarchs to the representation of the nation, intended as the search for national, social and global identities.

Shifting between issues of cultural belonging and Thainess to universal preoccupations and communal spaces, Thai photographers question the essence of photography by exploring its inherent ambiguity—or multiplicity—in the representation of reality.

About Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani
Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani has a Master degree in Asian Art Histories and is currently a part-time lecturer at LASALLE College of The Arts. She writes for several university journals in Singapore, art magazines and symposium publications. As an independent curator for commercial and institutional spaces in Singapore and Bangkok, she works mainly with young and emerging artists from Thailand and Singapore.

Her academic and curatorial focus revolves mostly around Contemporary Art in Thailand.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Books on Malaysian Politics and Economics

This is a selection of titles on Malaysian politics and economics: 

Democracy at Stake? Examining 16 By-Elections in Malaysia, 2008-2011 by Wong Chin Huat and Soon Li Tsin. Draws together information from 16 by-elections that took place in Malaysia since the 12th General Elections in 2008, in an important assessment of the current health of Malaysia's electoral system. The chapters have been written by journalists, activists and researchers. This volume documents the by-election process and claims to have identified some significant flaws in the electoral system, particularly in relation to issues of legitimacy.

The New Economic Policy in Malaysia: Affirmative Action, Ethnic Inequalities and Social Justice edited by Edmund Terence Gomez and  Johan Saravanamuttu. For more than 40 years, the New Economic Policy and its successor programs have shaped Malaysia's socioeconomic development and the allocation of political power. The policy's core tenet was affirmative action on behalf of the Bumiputera community. Drawing on a wealth of statistical and documentary evidence, this major new book provides a comprehensive and rigorous assessment of the NEP. The contributors show that there have been some positive outcomes, among them a considerable reduction of poverty, greater interethnic equity parity and the emergence of a resourceful Bumiputera middle class. But these partial successes have to be weighed against persistent complaints associated with increasing intraethnic Bumiputera income disparities; the emergence of a small, politically powerful and disproportionately wealthy Bumiputera elite; a serious brain drain; and weak human capital. This volume offers a timely and fresh perspective, suggesting that the long-term implementation of racially-targeted policies reinforces stereotypical ethnic identities and hinders the creation of a more inclusive society.

Teresa Kok: Partner in Democracy by Jason Roshan. Here are extensively illustrated details of the life and political aims and achievements of Teresa Kok Suh Sim (b. 1964) since 2008 at Pakatan Rakyat MP for Seputeh, Selangor and elected member for Kinrara of the State Government of Selangor. Teresa's very varied activities in the interest of people of all backgrounds in her constituencies and on national issues are described and her long-term aims set out. With photographs and accompanying DVD.

The Audacity to Think: An Invitation to Rethink Politics by Steven Sim. In this short softback a young political scientist and Penang Municipal Councillor looks thoughtfully at Malaysia's political arena. In concise terms he discusses the urgent need for younger Malaysians to participate in the country's political life - a dimension too important to be left to politicians. Among the immediate relevant issues raised are: neutrality and ideology; categorisation of people; language issues; and democratic power.

States of Reform: Governing Selangor and Penang by Tricia Yeoh. These 28 articles by a researcher/economist have appeared in the Penang Economic Monthly since the 2008 elections which put the opposition Pakatan Rakyat in control of the State governments in Penang and Selangor. Matters of relevance to voters in the 2012 forthcoming General Election are explored. Eight articles look at federal-state relations and tensions, at local-level democracy and transparency. Eleven articles are on policies and practices concerning public services and their financing; and then financial management, budgeting, and federal-state financial relations are the subjects of seven contributions.