Political boundaries divide Asia into units that sometimes the obscure many commonalities that transcend such boundaries, they also reinforce the marginalisation of people who live in the so-called border areas. Yet a better appreciation of these 'transitional zones' is in fact critical to our understanding of processes of social and cultural change in the states lying beyond them. Nonetheless, such a focus remains peripheral to area studies and the disciplines which feed into them.
The people who operate the site believe that a new academic initiative is needed to recognise the links, both historical and contemporary, that connect people in these borderlands. The purpose of the network is to encourage academic exchange between both local and foreign scholars from a wide variety of disciplinary backgrounds in the arts, humanities and social sciences.Its concerns are varied, ranging from migratory movements, transformations in cultural, linguistic and religious practices, to ethnic mobilization and conflict, marginalisation, and environmental concerns. Its aim is to generate new knowledge and methodologies in order that we should better understand these transitional zones, and to contribute to a reconfiguration of theoretical and methodological approaches to borderlands in general.
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