The Thai-Burma railway, built under Japanese command by Allied prisoners of war and Asian labourers in 1942-43, can lay claim to being a cultural route, even though nearly three quarters of its physical infrastructure has been demolished. Not only are its archaeological remains evident in the landscape but over the years its memory has progressively transcended national boundaries. Its heritage has also been shaped not only by the Thais, on whose territory much of its remains reside, but also by cross-cultural links and interventions by other national groups with their own wartime memories. Yet, much of this heritage remains fragile and as the generation who experience World War II ages and dies, the future of the railway as a cultural route will be contingent on the emergence of new shared memories across its multinational stakeholders with an interest in its commemoration and heritage.
|Publication status||Published - 2013|