Brett Neilson

The Kra Canal: A corridor not to be

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Plans to build a shipping canal across the Kra Isthmus, the narrow strip of land that joins Thailand to Malaysia, have animated colonial dreams and logistical fantasies since the late seventeenth century. An examination of the changing circumstances surrounding the nonrealization of this project reveals contingencies of infrastructure, geology, and power that engineering and geopolitics cannot easily resolve. Challenging land-centered visions of the sea and fostering discordant understandings of human ecology, the story of the Kra Canal’s nonappearance registers the limits of colonial ambition and commercial enterprise amid the shifting sands of world politics and economy


  • Kra
  • Sea
  • Imperialism
  • Nationalism


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