With exceptions, English-language publications on Southeast Asia reveal little knowledge of scholarship in the French and Japanese languages. So, it is good to see books in these languages published in translation. These two books display fine scholarship as well as contrasts with academic fashion in the English language. Imperial Borderlands is an archive-based study, and Maritime Trade is an archaeological study. They share an exemplary regard for evidence, methodology, and analytical rigor.

There has been a tendency to subsume nearly all activities associated with European colonialism into an imperialist agenda and to include modern mapping technologies as an example of this. But Marie de Rugy writes in Imperial Borderlands that “the ambiguities of colonial domination appear with particular acuity in the mapping of empire's borderlands” (p. 2) and that “maps actually have had very little power, even in a colonial context, if one goes beyond the discourses to look at...

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