Myanmar’s rapid change of political fortunes as of yesterday might easily come as woven at the centre of two narratives that seem to have defined Myanmar in the eyes of many: on the one hand, a crashing end to a story of hope and democratic change; on the other, the soft, yet inescapable, thump of a history of military despotism reasserting itself once more. Yet regardless of how political observers seek to fit the military’s re-ascendance to power into various stories of democracy, authoritarian retrenchment, and Myanmar history, it might be best to first spare a thought for what implications the coup carries for Burmese individuals on the ground.
On November 11, 2020, Managing Editor Kai Scott sat down with Prof. Erik Martinez Kuhonta, Associate Professor in the department of Political Science at McGill University, to discuss the results of the 2020 general election in Myanmar, and what these mean for democratization in the country.
In general, Myanmar’s 2020 elections are worth the attention of people around the world, providing us with insights into how this critical transformation of ideology has taken place in the country. A future of a fully democratized Myanmar might still be distant, but with politicians like Aung San Suu Kyi, gradually improving of economic competitiveness, improved civil rights protections, and a growing civic consciousness, Myanmar’s road to democracy is by no means out of reach.