A new academic blog about life on the Thai-Burma border has been launched. Called “the crooked line“, it already carries posts on Karen cartoons, tattoos, and the murky space that divides Thailand from Burma.

Writing of the people who live in that space, the author asserts:

They live in no-man’s land. They have no country, no papers, no boundaries. They are nobody’s living slightly west of nowhere. They live on the periphery, hope and a future in their sight but so far out of reach. They could lean across and touch Thailand but they cannot go there freely. They would have to dare the soldiers gun to return to their homeland. On one side they have an invisible barrier that bars them from Thailand, on the other a very visible gun that bars them from Burma.

I hope this post leads to future explorations and descriptions of what is undoubtedly a complex and demanding field-site.

This new offering should helpfully add to the proliferation of specialist blogs on Southeast Asia. There is an opportunity for this blog to make a major contribution. I encourage New Mandala readers to have a close look. There is already much of value in this fresh enterprise.