Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Reclaiming Rangoon: (Post-)imperial urbanism and poverty, 1920–62

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 August 2018


MICHAEL SUGARMAN
Affiliation:
Magdalene College, University of Cambridge Email: mwsugarman@gmail.com
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

This article considers the relationship between poverty in Rangoon and the ways in which both an imperial and a post-imperial urbanism helped ‘improve’, develop, and reclaim Rangoon's urban environment. Examining the actions of the Rangoon Development Trust before and after the Second World War in the context of actions taken by the Bombay Improvement Trust, Bombay Development Directorate, Singapore Improvement Trust, and Hong Kong Housing Authority, it both analyses measures taken in Rangoon and constructs a connective history of urban development in relation to other Asian port cities. Incorporating documents released only in 2014 by the National Archives of Myanmar, this analysis for the first time considers interventions made in Rangoon's post-war built environment of poverty, connecting these actions to policies constructed over the preceding decades.


Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2018 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below.

Footnotes

*I would like to thank Tim Harper, Sasha Sahni, Camille Cole, Catherine Evans, Sunil Amrith, and the anonymous reviewers for their insightful comments and guidance at various stages of pursuing this research as well as the late Chris Bayly for encouraging me to pursue such research. I would also like to acknowledge and thank the History Project at the Joint Center for History and Economics, Harvard University, and the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET) for their support of this research. Lastly, I would like to acknowledge the support of the Cambridge Overseas Trusts and the Smuts Memorial Fund in pursuing my research more broadly.


References

1 Echenberg, Myron, Plague Ports: The Global Urban Impact of Bubonic Plague, 1894–1901 (New York: NYU Press, 2007)Google Scholar; Home, Robert, Of Planting and Planning: The Making of British Colonial Cities (London: E & FN Spon, 1997)Google Scholar; Kidambi, Prashant, The Making of an Indian Metropolis: Colonial Governance and Public Culture in Bombay, 1890–1920 (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2007), pp. 71114Google Scholar.

2 For Calcutta, see Maharashtra State Archives, Mumbai, General Department (Henceforth MSA, GD), 1910, 51, 452, p. M-S 12-3, H. Wheeler, ‘Deputation of the Hon'ble Mr C.H. Bompas, I.C.S. by the Government of Bengal to Bombay to study the working of the City of Bombay Improvement Trust’, 12 November 1910; for Bombay MSA, GD, 1899, 32, 36, p. M-S 227, ‘Administration Report of the City of Bombay Improvement Trust for the year ending on the 31st March 1899’, 31 March 1899; for Singapore, see National Archives of Singapore, Singapore (henceforth NAS), Housing Development Board Records, HDB 1090, SIT 744/50, p. 001609-10, ‘Tiong Bahru Estate, history and development of, 1950–1953’, 2 July 1952; for Hong Kong, see United Kingdom National Archives, London, UK (henceforth UKNA), CO 129/576/1, ‘Proposed schemes for improvements in housing conditions, 1938–1939’, 1939; for Rangoon, see British Library, India Office Records, London, UK (henceforth BL, IOR), V/27/780/12, 1917, ‘Report of the Departmental Committee on Town Planning, Burma’.

3 MSA, GD, 1899, 32, 36, p. M-S 227, ‘Administration Report of the City of Bombay Improvement Trust for the year ending on the 31st March 1899’, 31 March 1899.

4 BL, IOR V/27/780/12, Report of the Departmental Committee on Town Planning, Burma, Rangoon: Office of the Superintendent, Government Printing, Burma, 1917, p. 93

5 Legg, Stephen, Spaces of Colonialism: Delhi's Urban Governmentalities (Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing, 2007), pp. 216–8CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

6 Edwards, Penny, ‘Grounds for Protest: Placing Shwedagon Pagoda in Colonial and Postcolonial History’, Postcolonial Studies 9, 2 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Seekins, Donald M., State and Society in Modern Rangoon (London: Routledge, 2011)Google Scholar.

7 Frasch, Tilman, ‘Tracks in the City: Technology, Mobility and Society in Colonial Rangoon and Singapore’, Modern Asian Studies 46, 1 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Kaur, Amarjit, ‘Indian Labour, Labour Standards, and Workers’ Health in Burma and Malaya, 1900–1940’, Modern Asian Studies 40, 2 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

8 Tan, Tai-Yong, ‘Port Cities and Hinterlands: A Comparative Study of Singapore and Calcutta’, Political Geography 26, 7 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

9 Amrith, Sunil S., Crossing the Bay of Bengal: The Furies of Nature and the Fortunes of Migrants (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2013)Google Scholar; ‘Reconstructing the “Plural Society”: Asian Migration between Empire and Nation, 1940–1948’, Past and Present 210, Supplement 6 (2011); Green, Nile, ‘Buddhism, Islam and the Religious Economy of Colonial Burma’, Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 46, 02 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Lewis, Su Lin, ‘Print and Colonial Port Cultures of the Indian Ocean Littoral: Penang and Rangoon’, Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society 82, 2 (297) (2009)Google Scholar; Cities in Motion: Urban Life and Cosmopolitanism in Southeast Asia, 1920–1940 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016). For more on the concept of port cities, see Tan, ‘Port Cities and Hinterlands’.

10 Grunow, Tristan R., ‘Paving Power: Western Urban Planning and Imperial Space from the Streets of Meiji Tokyo to Colonial Seoul’, Journal of Urban History 42, 3 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Hein, Carola, ‘Japanese Cities in Global Context’, Journal of Urban History 42, 3 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

11 Charney, Michael W., A History of Modern Burma (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Egreteau, Renaud, ‘The Idealization of a Lost Paradise: Narratives of Nostalgia and Traumatic Return Migration among Indian Repatriates from Burma since the 1960s’, The Journal of Burma Studies 18, I (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Saha, Jonathan, ‘A Mockery of Justice? Colonial Law, the Everday State and Village Politics in the Burma Delta, C.1890–1910’, Past and Present 217, 1 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Law, Disorder and the Colonial State: Corruption in Burma C.1900 (Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013); ‘Madness and the Making of a Colonial Order in Burma’, Modern Asian Studies 47, 02 (2013); ‘Is It India? Colonial Burma as a “Problem” in South Asian History’, South Asian History and Culture 7, 1 (2016).

12 Cooper, Frederick, ‘What Is the Concept of Globalization Good For? An African Historian's Perspective’, African Affairs 100, 399 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Amrith, Sunil S. and Harper, Tim, ‘Introduction’, in Sites of Asian Interaction: Ideas, Networks and Mobility, ed. Harper, Tim and Amrith, Sunil (Delhi, India: Cambridge University Press, 2014)Google Scholar.

13 Chandavarkar, Rajnarayan, Imperial Power and Popular Politics: Class, Resistance and the State in India, C.1850–1950 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998)Google Scholar; Kidambi, Prashant, ‘Housing the Poor in a Colonial City: The Bombay Improvement Trust, 1898–1918’, Studies in History 17, 1 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; The Making of an Indian Metropolis, pp. 71–114; Rao, Nikhil, House, but No Garden: Apartment Living in Bombay's Suburbs, 1898–1964 (Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 2013), pp. 56CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Caru, Vanessa, Des Toits Sur La Grève (Paris: Arman Colin, 2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Chang, Jiat-Hwee, ‘“Tropicalizing” Planning: Sanitation, Housing, and Technologies of Improvement in Colonial Singapore’, in Imperial Contagions: Medicine, Hygiene and Cultures of Planning in Asia, ed. Peckham, Robert and Pomfret, David M. (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2013)Google Scholar; Kwak, Nancy, ‘Selling the City-State: Planning and Housing in Singapore, 1945–1990’, in Another Global City: Historical Explorations into the Transnational Municipal Moment, 1850–2000, ed. Saunier, Pierre-Yves and Ewen, Shane (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008)Google Scholar; Kwak, Nancy, A World of Homeowners: American Power and the Politics of Housing Aid (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Smart, Alan, The Shek Kip Mei Myth: Squatters, Fires and Colonial Rule in Hong Kong, 1950–1963 (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2006)Google Scholar.

14 Osada, Noriyuki, ‘Housing the Rangoon Poor: Indians, Burmese, and Town Planning in Colonial Burma’, in Sites of Modernity: Asian Cities and Their Evolution though Trade, Colonialism and Nationalism (Chulalongkorn University, 2011)Google Scholar. While housing the poor has been of little consequence to historians of Rangoon, a historian of urban China has argued for the importance of the urban poor in the tumultuous period of early twentieth-century Chinese history. Given Rangoon's complicated and complex history during this time, it seems important to focus not only on the well-connected elites and middle classes, but also on the urban poor in order to gain a fuller understanding of Rangoon and Burma during this period. For more on urban poverty in China, see Chen, Janet Y., Guilty of Indigence: The Urban Poor in China, 1900–1953 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2012)Google Scholar.

15 For more about the connections between Glasgow and Bombay, see Hazareesingh, Sandip, ‘Interconnected Synchronicities: The Production of Bombay and Glasgow as Modern Global Ports C.1850–1880’, Journal of Global History 4, 1 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar. For more about the aims and implications of the BIT, see Kidambi, The Making of an Indian Metropolis, p. 70. For more on the BDD, see Caru, Des Toits Sur La Grève.

16 Rao, House, but No Garden, pp. 24–8.

17 Estimates for the number of chawls come from Maharashtra State Archives, Public Works Department, Development Department (Henceforth, MSA, PWD, DD), 1922, 12 II, p. 27, ‘Questions asked in the Legislative Council Bombay Sir Chimanlal H. Setalved answering question no. 5 by S. K. Bole, M.L.C. at the ensuing meeting of the Legislative Council’, 22 July 1922.

18 MSA, GD, 1918–1919, 1919, 379, p. S-M 9-14, ‘Housing problem—How it is being tackled by in England by JP Orr’.

19 MSA, PWD, DD, 1921, 225, Sr. 42, H. V. Braham, ‘Establishment of a Directorate of Development to be against as at on a department of Government and an executive authority to undertake development work in Bombay City and the Areas immediately adjoining it’, 18 November 1920.

20 MSA, PWD, DD, 1926, 26, Industrial Housing in Bombay, p. 21, ‘Report on the working of the Development Directorate for the year ending 31 March 1926’.

21 MSA, PWD, DD, 1924, 26/II, pp. 53–61, ‘Report on the working of the Development Directorate for the year ending 31 March 1924’.

22 MSA, PWD, DD, 1930, 53/36, p. 10, ‘Report of Mr. T Harvey on Development Department Chawls, Report of the Special Advisory Committee on the Industrial Housing Scheme, 25 March 1927’; MSA, PWD, DD, 1930, 153, pp. 174–6, ‘Abolition of that Development Department and Distribution of the work of the DD’, 5 December 1929.

23 BL, IOR, V/27/780/12, 1917, p. 78, ‘Report of the Departmental Committee on Town Planning, Burma, Rangoon’.

24 MSA, GD, 1910, 50, 460, p. M-S 21, ‘Information required by the Government of Burma concerning the conduct of Improvement projects in Bombay City’, 4 June 1910; BL, IOR, V/26/780/12, 1917, pp. 12–3, ‘Report of the Suburban Development Committee, Rangoon’.

25 BL, IOR, V/26/780/12, 1917, pp. 12–3, ‘Report of the Suburban Development Committee, Rangoon’.

26 British Library, Asia, Pacific and Africa Collections, London, UK (henceforth BL, APAC), P/V 1176, 1941, pp. 9–10, ‘Report of the Rangoon Development Trust Enquiry Committee, 1941’; BL, IOR, V/27/780/12, 1917, p. 77, ‘Report of the Departmental Committee on Town Planning, Burma’.

27 For some examples of the use of chawl, see National Archives of Myanmar, Yangon, Myanmar (henceforth NAM), 4756, 4/6(21), 1927, pp. 33–4, 36, ‘Report on the Public Health of Rangoon Vol. I’ and NAM, 11865, 4/19(22), 1960, pp. 13, 75, ‘Report of the Committee appointed to enquire into the effects of the removal of rent control in Rangoon’.

28 NAM, 4756, 4/6(21), 1927, pp. 33–4, Report on the Public Health of Rangoon Vol. I’.

29 Ibid., p. 61.

Ibid

30 Metcalf, Thomas R., Imperial Connections: India in the Indian Ocean Arena, 1860–1920 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007)Google Scholar; An Imperial Vision: Indian Architecture and Britain's Raj (London: Faber and Faber, 1989).

31 Furnivall, J. S., Colonial Policy and Practice: A Comparitive Study of Burma and Netherlands India (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1948)Google Scholar; Bayly, Christopher, Occasional Paper No. 3, Rangoon (Yangon) 1939–49: The Death of a Colonial Metropolis (Cambridge: Centre for South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge, 2003), p. 1Google Scholar; Bayly, Christopher and Harper, Tim, Forgotten Wars: The End of Britain's Asian Empire (London: Allen Lane, 2007), pp. 373–4Google Scholar.

32 BL, APAC, W 2058/26 (1933), pp. 65–6, ‘Census of India 1931: Volume XI, Part II—Tables’.

33 NAM, 4758, 4/1(21), 1927, p. 9, ‘Report on the Public Health of Rangoon Vol. II’.

34 BL, APAC, W 2058/26 (1933), p. 301, ‘Census of India 1931: Volume XI, Part II—Tables’.

35 The report defined slums in ‘the accurate sense of an area overcrowded with irregularly disposed buildings and not laid out in streets’. BL, IOR, 1917, V/27/780/12, p. 93, ‘Report of the Departmental Committee on Town Planning, Burma’.

36 NAM, 16665, 1/15e, 1931, J. A. Maung Gyi, ‘Statement of Objects and Reasons’, p. 6, ‘The Rangoon Labour Housing Bill’, 19 August 1931.

37 NAM, 16665, 1/15e, 1931, Lieut-Col. E. Butterfield to the Sec. to the Gov't of Burma, p. 18, 21, ‘The Rangoon Labour Housing Bill’.

38 For example, a marked drop in occupied rooms in a BDD properties at Sewri, Naigaum, DeLisle Road, and Worli was noted as coinciding with a ‘mill strike’. See MSA, PWD, DD, 1926, 26, pp. 44–8, ‘Report on the working of the Development Directorate for the year ending 31 March 1926’. See also the attribution of a mill strike in driving a spike in renters in arrears in MSA, PWD DD, 1924, 3A, p. 116, ‘Bombay and Suburban Area. Circulars, Agenda minutes, etc., in connection with the meetings of the Advisory Committee’.

39 An annual report on the working of Indian factories (India here including Burma) describes labour as temporary, ‘since the labour in Burma is almost entirely imported and does not look on this country as its permanent home’; see NAM, 152, 2/1, 1897–1940, ‘Annual Report on the working of the Indian Factories Act, 1911, in Burma for the year 1922’, p. 2, ‘Reports on the working of The India Factory Act, 1897–1940. Reports on the working of Municipalities 1876–77 to 1881–1882 (to the end of Rangoon Municipality)’. A 1927 report on rent control describes labourers in Rangoon and Burma: ‘this class of people stay in Rangoon for a short time en route to districts and those returning from districts remain here for a short time on their way to India so that Rangoon is more or less a clearing house for the whole of Burma.’ For more, see NAM, 11865, 4/19(22), 1960, pp. 84–5, ‘Report of the Committee appointed to enquire into the effects of the removal of rent control in Rangoon’; census data point to the gender imbalance of Indian communities in Burma; see BL, APAC, W 2058/26 (1933), pp. 6–7, ‘Census of India 1931: Volume XI, Part II—Tables’.

40 Chandavarkar, Rajnarayan, The Origins of Industrial Capitalism in India: Business Strategies and the Working Classes in Bombay, 1900–1940 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), pp. 124–67CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

41 Ibid., pp. 159–65; Professor H. S. Jevons of the University of Allahabad wrote: ‘the mere discomfort of family life in a single room abolished every ideal of right living’, in a piece critical of the BDD's development projects.’ Sir Lawless Hepper, the director of the BDD, acknowledged the problem in his response: ‘As regards the single roomed tenements in Bombay I am afraid we can't avoid them, much as I dislike the idea.’ For more about this correspondence and criticisms of the BDD, see MSA, PWD, DD, 1921, 702, pp. 17–29, 32–3, ‘Certain suggestions made by Professor HS Jevons of the University of Allahabad in connection with the Development of Bombay and Suburban Area’.

Ibid

42 A 1927 Public Health Report on Rangoon defines lodging houses as ‘one room in a row of similar rooms often no more than 12 ½ feet wide and, allowing for the space at the back of the lot for kitchen and latrine, probably 30 or 40 feet deep’; see NAM, 4756, 4/6(21), 1927, p. 30, ‘Report on the Public Health of Rangoon Vol. I’.

43 One inspection found ‘over 50 coolies’ where ‘the number allowed by regulation was 9’; see ibid., p. 32.

44 Ibid., p. 86.

Ibid

45 Ibid., p. 32.

Ibid

46 Ibid., pp. 37–8.

Ibid

47 Ibid., pp. 61, 37.

Ibid

48 Ibid., p. 61.

Ibid

49 Ibid., p. 85.

Ibid

50 Ibid., p. 99.

Ibid

51 NAM, 11865, 4/19(22), 1960, pp. 3–4, ‘Report of the Committee appointed to enquire into the effects of the removal of rent control in Rangoon’.

52 Ibid., p. 14.

Ibid

53 Ibid., p. 67.

Ibid

54 Ibid., p. 68.

Ibid

55 Ibid., p. 70.

Ibid

56 Mr Pillay also noted cases where landlords ‘have taken more than 100 per cent, 150 per cent and 200 per cent increases’; see ibid., p. 69.

57 Ibid., p. 71.

Ibid

58 Ibid., p. 78.

Ibid

59 Ibid., p. 84.

Ibid

60 Ibid., p. 29.

Ibid

61 BL, IOR, V/24/2963, 1926–1927, ‘Seventh Annual Report of the Trustees: For the Development of the City of Rangoon on the working of the Rangoon Development Trust, for the year 1926–27’.

62 Osada, ‘Housing the Rangoon Poor’.

63 A report on the problem of housing in Rangoon describes the importance of ‘removing the huts from the dilapidated bombed out building[s]’. This goes to illustrate the kinds of conditions facing Rangoon residents in the late 1940s. For more, see NAM, 22, 11/8(5), 1950–1951, p. 5, ‘The Housing Problem in Rangoon (Memorandum by Dr HMJ Hart, Statistical Advisor to the Government of the Union of Burma, in collaboration with U Kyaw Sein, Acting Chairman, Rangoon Development Trust)’.

64 Burma, which had previously been a province of British India, was separated as its own crown colony in 1937. The Japanese captured Rangoon and most of Burma's territory from 1942 to 1943. The Allies recaptured Burma and ruled via a military administration from 1945 to 1946. A reinstated colonial government ruled Burma from 1946 until the country became independent on 4 January 1948.

65 For a discussion of the armed conflicts, particularly as they relate to Burma's Karen community, see Mikael Gravers, ‘Disorder as Order: The Ethno-Nationalist Struggle of the Karen in Burma/Myanmar—a Discussion of the Dynamics of an Ethicized Civil War and Its Historical Roots’, The Journal of Burma Studies 19, I (2015).

66 India has been called a ‘centre of empire’ in Metcalf, Imperial Connections, p. 1. For more about the post-war problems in Hong Kong and Singapore as they relate to housing, see Hong Kong Public Records Office, Hong Kong, China (henceforth HKPRO), HKRS156-1-579, 1944–1961, ‘Housing—Miscellaneous documents received from the S of S on’ and NAS, HDB 1057, SIT 240/39, ‘Reports on the Constitution activities of the Singapore Improvement Trust, 1939–1956’.

67 NAM, 4756, 4/6(21), 1927, p. 45, ‘Report on the Public Health of Rangoon Vol. I’.

68 Ibid., pp. 44–5.

Ibid

69 NAM, 22, 11/8(5), 1950–1951, pp. 3–5, ‘The Housing Problem in Rangoon (Memorandum by Dr HMJ Hart, Statistical Advisor to the Government of the Union of Burma, in collaboration with U Kyaw Sein, Acting Chairman, Rangoon Development Trust)’.

70 Ibid., pp. 2–5.

Ibid

71 Ibid., pp. 13–4.

Ibid

72 Ibid., p. 17.

Ibid

73 HKPRO, HKRS41-1-7185, 1952–1956, ‘Mayor of Rangoon and Party—Visit of’.

74 A calendar of the Mayor of Rangoon's visit can be found in ibid., #3(2).

75 Ibid., #3.

Ibid

76 Ibid., #3(2).

Ibid

77 Ibid., #3(3).

Ibid

78 For debates about re-establishing the Rangoon Development Trust—the institution through which an imperial urbanism shaped Rangoon—after the Second World War, see NAM, 33E, 12/1, 1946, ‘12th meeting—Wed. 23 June 1946. To consider a memorandum by the Social Services Department on the expansion of the Board of Trustees for the development of the City of Rangoon’.

79 The NAM opened access to research on files originating from 1948 to 1962 in July 2014.

80 Donnison, F. S. V., British Military Administration in the Far East, 1943–1946, History of the Second World War. United Kingdom Military Series (London: HMSO, 1956), p. 271Google Scholar.

81 Ibid., pp. 271–2.

Ibid

82 Ibid., pp. 161–2, 108.

Ibid

83 Ibid., pp. 271–2, 286.

Ibid

84 UKNA, FO 643/49, Rangoon Development Trust, p. 10, ‘Minutes of a Special Meeting of the Board of Trustees held in the office of the Rangoon Development Trust, on Thursday, the 8th of August 1946, at 2-30 p.m.’.

85 UKNA, FO 643/49, 1946, p. 3, ‘Notes of a meeting in Secretaries held in the Office of the Chief Secretary to the Government of Burma at 11 a.m. on Wednesday the 20th February 1946’.

86 Sunil Amrith has recently published much work on migration patterns around the Bay of Bengal before and after the Second World War, some of which focuses on migration to and from Burma. See Amrith, Sunil S., Migration and Diaspora in Modern Asia (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Crossing the Bay of Bengal; ‘Reconstructing the “Plural Society”’.

87 UKNA, FO 643/71, p. 2, ‘Minutes of an Ordinary Meeting of the Board of Trustees In the Board Room of the Rangoon Development Trust Office on Thursday, the 27th of February 1947, at 2-30 p.m.’.

88 Harper, Tim, The End of Empire and the Making of Malaya (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), pp. 5961Google Scholar.

89 NAM, 7681, 4/18(2), 1955, pp. 3–5, ‘Comprehensive development plan supplement, Sep. 30, 1954. National housing and town and country’.

90 MSA, GD, 40, 651, 1912, ‘A lecture on “Light and Air in dwelling in Bombay” delivered by the Hon'ble Mr. J.P. Orr’.

91 HKPRO, HKRS 115-1-86, 1956, pp. 1–4, ‘Interim Report of the Reform Club's Committee on Low Cost Housing, Slum Clearance and Development’, 30 November 1956.

92 MSA, GD, 379, 1919, The Bombay Co-operative Housing Association (Leaflet No. 33)—The Housing Problem: How it is being tackled in England by Mr JP Orr [Discussion], p. S-M 9-14, ‘“Housing Problem—How it is being tackled by in England” by JP Orr’.

93 NAM, 14, 11/8(17), 1954, p. 2, ‘Housing and Social Survey’.

94 Jones, Margaret, ‘Tuberculosis, Housing and the Colonial State: Hong Kong, 1900–1950’, Modern Asian Studies 37, 3 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

95 NAM, 14, 11/8(17), 1954, p. 2, ‘Housing and Social Survey’.

96 NAM, 488, 12/6, 1953, ‘Proposed consolidation of Rangoon boundary with Dalla docking at Dalla including expansion to docking and ship facilities the development of a housing area’.

97 For 1920s, see NAM, 4758, 4/1(21), 1927, Answers by Mr Gavin Scott, Questions by Mr C. H. Campagnac, 7 January 1927, p. 21, ‘Report on the Public Health of Rangoon Vol. II’; NAM, 488, 12/6, 1953 [U Tin Nyut, Chairman, Inland Water Transport Board] and John G Claybourn, Consultant, IWT, to U Schwe Mra, Secretary of Transport & Communications, 10 January 1953, pp. 10–11, ‘Proposed consolidation of Rangoon boundary with Dalla docking at Dalla including expansion to docking and ship facilities the development of a housing area’.

98 NAM, 488, 12/6, 1953, ‘Proposed consolidation of Rangoon boundary with Dalla docking at Dalla including expansion to docking and ship facilities the development of a housing area’, pp. 12–8, John G. Claybourn to U Schwe Mra, 10 January 1953.

99 Ibid.; for more about satellite towns and urban planning in the Latin American context, see Grandin, Greg, Fordlandia: The Rise and Fall of Henry Ford's Forgotten Jungle City (London: Icon, 2010)Google Scholar.

Ibid

100 North Okkalapa was estimated to have 16,727 housing sites, South Okkalapa was estimated to have 10,374 housing sites, and Thaketa was estimated to have 5,248 housing sites. There are no population estimates for Thaketa, but North Okkalapa accommodated an estimated 68,247 people while South Okkalapa accommodated an estimated 73,065 people. For more on estimates, see Is Trust Vindicated? A Chronicle of the Various Accomplishments of the Government Headed by General Ne Win During the Period of Tenure from November, 1958 to February 6, 1960 (Rangoon: Government of the Union of Burma, 1960).

101 Ibid., pp. 387–8.

Ibid

102 Ibid., pp. 386–7.

Ibid

103 King Okkalappa is said to have built the first pagoda on the site of the current Schwedagon Pagoda. Okkalapa was also the name of an ancient town roughly situated on the site of modern Yangon.

104 For challenges posed by refugees in Hong Kong, see HKPRO, HKRS70-1-452-20, 1955, Sir Alexander Grantham, ‘Hong Kong Economic Housing Society: Lady Grantham Villas’, 18 July 1955; for Singapore, see NAS, HDB, 1096, SIT 498/52, Chairman of Trust [AB Sewell] Press Release, p.000931-4, ‘Publicity regarding Trust affairs’, 17 September 1958.

105 NAS, HDB 1057, SIT 240/39, p.001465-6, J. M. Fraser to A. E. S. Alcock, ‘Reports on the Constitution activities of the Singapore Improvement Trust, 1939–1956’, 29 September 1952.

106 Amrith, ‘Reconstructing the “Plural Society”’; Crossing the Bay of Bengal; Amrith and Harper, Sites of Asian Interaction; Green, ‘Buddhism, Islam and the Religious Economy of Colonial Burma’; Bombay Islam: The Religious Economy of the West Indian Ocean, 1840–1915 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011); Lewis, ‘Print and Colonial Port Cultures’; Cities in Motion.

107 Cooper, ‘What Is the Concept of Globalization Good For?’; Sugarman, Michael, ‘Building Burma: Constructing Rangoon's Urban Influence on Citizenship and Nationhood’, History Compass 14, 10 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

108 Historians of Burma have long been interested in the division between South and Southeast Asia. For a recent discussion of this debate, see Saha, ‘Is It India?’.

Full text views

Full text views reflects PDF downloads, PDFs sent to Google Drive, Dropbox and Kindle and HTML full text views.

Total number of HTML views: 177
Total number of PDF views: 192 *
View data table for this chart

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 22nd August 2018 - 3rd December 2020. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Hostname: page-component-79f79cbf67-8q5vc Total loading time: 0.285 Render date: 2020-12-03T05:02:13.366Z Query parameters: { "hasAccess": "0", "openAccess": "0", "isLogged": "0", "lang": "en" } Feature Flags last update: Thu Dec 03 2020 04:07:24 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time) Feature Flags: { "metrics": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "peerReview": true, "crossMark": true, "comments": true, "relatedCommentaries": true, "subject": true, "clr": false, "languageSwitch": true }

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Reclaiming Rangoon: (Post-)imperial urbanism and poverty, 1920–62
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Reclaiming Rangoon: (Post-)imperial urbanism and poverty, 1920–62
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Reclaiming Rangoon: (Post-)imperial urbanism and poverty, 1920–62
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *