Reporting Reports

Histories of colonial medical institutions are often heavily reliant upon government reports. My own work on the Rangoon Lunatic Asylum in the nineteenth century uses them extensively to tease out the colonial state’s priorities in treating “insanity”. But in conducting this analysis, I did not conceptualize the audience for the reports beyond the ranks of…

Animals in the Asylum

Last week I presented a paper as part of a panel on the history of lunatic asylums at the European Association of Southeast Asian Studies’ annual conference, hosted by the University of Vienna. It was the first time that I had returned to the subject of colonial psychiatry since I completed the research for my…