Saffron Shadows and Salvaged Scripts : Literary Life in Myanmar Under Censorship and in Transition
Until 2012, Myanmar had been ruled for fifty years by one of the most paranoid and repressive censorship regimes in history. The military junta enforced strict reading and writing restrictions in line with their socialist ideology and was terrified of writers who could trigger change.
A transition towards democracy has seen the worst restrictions lifted, initiating a new era in the country's literature and literary culture. Inspired by Ellen Wiles's hunt for contemporary writing while living in Myanmar in 2013, this book explores the experiences and recent output of nine Myanmar writers spanning three generations, featuring interviews and English-language translations of their work, along with political, legal, and artistic analyses. Wiles includes men and women, fiction and poetry, capturing the effects of political and cultural change as they rippled across different groups and genres. Her work contributes both to the study of literature and culture in Myanmar and to the general study of art under censorship.