Recent reforms in Myanmar afforded local Christians new opportunities to more actively share the gospel with Buddhists. In doing so they entered into a public sphere tentatively emerging from five decades of censorship and other restrictions on expression. This article explores the place of misunderstanding and translation in encounters between evangelists and Buddhist audiences. For evangelists, to go public was to open oneself to the possibility, even the likelihood, of being misunderstood. Such misunderstandings emerged in part from the negotiation of similarity and difference entailed by translation practices. Edwards situates these practices in a conceptual and linguistic space partly shaped by nineteenth-century missionary efforts, and also by state attempts to regulate the public use of Buddhist language.

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