Christian Gilberti is a Ph.D. candidate in South and Southeast Asian Studies. His primary academic interest is in late 19th to mid-20th century Burmese cultural history and politics. His dissertation will focus on the growth of a Bamar ethnic cultural nationalism in colonial Burma from 1895-1948 and the creation of a national culture centred around strict Theravada Buddhism, the ceremonies of the deposed Konbaung court, and an imagined kinship with the Bamar ethnic group. This was a complex cultural nation-building project perpetrated by diverse actors that culminated in the separation of Burma from India in 1937.
He has a B.A. in Classics/History from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.St. in History from the University of Oxford. He edits Thant Myint-U’s history website https://lostfootsteps.org and keeps a blog on Burmese history and culture at https://thamine.blog. He was a freelance journalist in Myanmar for two years and has written for The Mekong Review, Myanmore Magazine, Frontier Myanmar, and Southeast Asia Globe among other publications.