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Issue 116, Winter 2023

Wasafiri 116: Shorelines - South East Asia and the Littoral

Wasafiri 116: Shorelines: South East Asia and the Littoral, our special winter issue guest edited by Nazry Bahrawi, Joanne Leow, and the late Y-Dang Troeung, features a range of creative, critical, and artistic work from Singapore, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, and Myanmar and their diasporas, exploring the littoral encounter of existing on the shoreline.

In the marine sciences, the ‘littoral zone’ is the area of closest contact between the land and the water. With a special feature by Madeleine Thien on the late Y-Dang Troeung and her work, articles and essays on Asian New Wave cinema, migration, and labour flows in the region, interviews with Tiffany Tsao and Kirsten Han, and an assortment of poetry, fiction, reviews, and art, this issue imagines the region as an apt site for the study of the littoral zone as both 'metaphor' and 'spectacle'



Litorally Speaking
Nazry Bahrawi, Joanne Leow, and Y-Dang Troeung

Special Feature

'The Gravity of Her Existence': Madeleine Thien on Y-Dang Troeung
Madeleine Thien


Between Land Reclamation and Labour, Empathy and Asian New Wave Film: Fungibility in Yeo Siew Hua's A Land Imagined 幻土
Jerrine Tan

Li Zishu's Hidden Transcripts of Post-1970s Malaysia: Literature and Religion in Land of Floating Customs
Nicholas Y H Wong

Passionate Engagements, Intimate Entrapments: Love, War, and Those Caught Between Empire and Nation
Adrian Alarilla

Life Writing

On the Edge: Fate and Flourishing in the Fringes
Theophilus Kwek

Collecting Through Absence: Fragmenting Vietnamese Refugee Archives
Cindy Anh Nguyen

Eight Breaths
jee chan


Accountability, Liminality, and (Mis)representations in Translation: Khairani Barokka and Tiffany Tsao in Conversation
Khairani Barokka

A Space for Freedom of Thought and Expression: An Interview with The Mekong Review's Kirsten Han
Sudhir Vadaketh


Transmedial Meditations on the Shores of Southeast Asia
Jasmine Gui, Trinh Mai, and Zi Hao Wong


From Our Waters
Nuraliah Norasid

Hikayat Raja Bibi
Excerpted and trans. by Nazry Bahrawi

The Sand Man
William Jamieson


Islands; Lolo; The Great Pretenders
Shirley Camia

Landscape with Rusted Nail; Water Before, After; The First Boat
Jim Pascual Agustin

As a Kind of Contact; You Shall Know Your Friends Well; While the Older Brother Sleeps
Lawrence Lacambra Ypil

People of Nowhere; Burma, 2021; The Fall of Revolution
Maung Htike Aung

Review Essay

People Everywhere: Three Books on Authoritarianism and Resistance
The Sovereign Trickster: Death and Laughter in the Age of Duterte – Vicente L Rafael
Indonesia Out of Exile: How Pramoedya’s Buru Quartet Killed a Dictatorship – Max Lane
People from Bloomington – Budi Darma. Trans. by Tiffany Tsao
Reuven Pinnata


Your Emergency Contact Has Experienced an Emergency – Chen Chen
Imperium – Jay Gao
Jennifer Wong

Brown is Redacted: Reflecting on Race in Singapore – Kristian-Marc James Paul, Mysara Aljaru, and Myle Yan Tay, eds
Joshua Babcock

Tale of the Dreamer’s Son – Preeta Samarasan
Dina Zaman

Chinatown – Thuận. Trans. by Nguyến An Lý
Wandering Souls – Cecile Pin
Pengfei Zhang

Malaysian Crossings: Place and Language in the Worlding of Modern Chinese Literature – Cheow Thia Chan
Fiona Lee

The Great Reclamation – Rachel Heng
The Age of Goodbyes – Li Zi Shu. Trans. by YZ Chin
Kwan Ann Tan

Of the Florids – Shawn Hoo
Gopika Jadeja

Mediating Aotearoa: Essays on Māori Culture – Dieter Riemenschneider
Wow – Bill Manhire
Yingjie M Cheng

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