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"By 1942, SEAsian Nationalism was largely a failure." How far do you agree with this statement?

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"By 1942, SEAsian Nationalism was largely a failure." How far do you agree with this statement? Nationalism is a process whereby the people living in a certain region became more aware of themselves as a distinct group like a nation with a shared purpose, destiny and common goals. Nationalistic movements in SE Asia happened during the period of 1800s to 1942 by which in 1942 and most SE Asian nationalist movements ended up as failures. The statement that "SE Asian Nationalism was largely a failure." is true because by 1942, none of the Nationalist movements had achieved their aim of independence. However despite SE Asian nationalism being largely a failure, nationalism did Asia a service - it helped to raise political, social and economic consciousness amongst the people of SE Asia. ...read more.


TS: Another reason for the failure of SE Asian nationalism was the over reliance of its members on its leader. Several radical nationalist movements crumpled after the Colonial governments arrested their leaders. Evidence: (i) Saya San Rebellion, led by Saya San himself, lasted for two years from 1930 to mid-1932. The rebellion ended with Saya San's execution. It showed the effectiveness of the British response using the "applying the stick" method, which put the movement to rest. (iii) Sukarno was a leader of the PNI who was charismatic and had excellent oratorical skills. The Dutch imprisoned Sukarno in 1929 and this caused the nationalist movement to integrate by the 1930s. The removal of the key leader most effectively crippled the nationalist movement. Evaluation: The colonial powers managed to cripple various movements and segregated the party by removing the key figures and leaders. ...read more.


SE Asian nationalism was indeed largely a failure due to the disunity within the ranks of various nationalist groups and the response of the Colonial powers with regards to the nationalist movements and rebellions which were poorly organized by these nationalist parties. The colonial response towards the nationalist activities were also well targeted in removing key figures and thus caused the various parties to break up and eventually die out. However despite the major failures SE Asian nationalism faced, it was a turning point for the people in SE Asia as it brought to light issues about independence and being a nation which would have never been realized by the SE Asian people without nationalism. There is no doubt that was largely a failure, as it did not accomplish the goal of independence from the colonial powers. ...read more.

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