Drawing a blank or not

Drawing a blank or not

Raffles and the British Invasion of JavaRaffles and the British Invasion of Java by Tim Hannigan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Raffles and the British Invasion of Java, by Tim Hannigan, is a well researched and well-written book. Tim Hannigan presents Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles (6 July 1781 – 5 July 1826) in a way he has rarely been seen; not as a liberal paragon, but as a flawed, overly-ambitious man. He is presented as intelligent and creative, but also as willful, petty and somewhat of a hypocrite.

An examination of the life and legacy of the man often credited with the success that is Singapore. This book looks at what happened when the British invaded Java. It’s not an alternate history or an episode of Doctor Who. The British did invade and occupied Java for almost five years (Aug. 1811-March 1816).
The changes, reforms and consequences of that half-decade resonated long after they left. From government structure, land division and the administration of tax districts Raffles policies and decisions would have lasting consequences for himself, his family, Indonesia and for Great Britain.
The man who is touted as a great reformer is more often revealed as an example of colonial excess, greed and cultural disregard.

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Author: duplezwrites

I have been in Asia since early 1996, and have taught in local schools, universities and language schools in South Korea, Indonesia, Thailand, and China. I was director of studies at language schools in China and a secondary school administrator in Indonesia. Along the way, I've been a teacher-trainer in Korea, China, Thailand, and Indonesia. More importantly, and I hope more efficiently, I've been a husband, father and grandfather.

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