Submissions

Submissions to Tea Circle are always welcome. We are happy to consider pieces in any of the following categories, provided Tea Circle is the first and only outlet for publication. We are especially interested in the work of new and emerging scholars of Burma/Myanmar.

Submissions Policy

We intend for Tea Circle to be a platform for debate and discussion and we also hope that our posts spark conversations off-site as well. While the blog is now hosted by the Centre for Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Toronto, we have been keen to make it a place for both scholarly and non-scholarly contributions. We also try to distinguish between posts that are based on research or fieldwork and those that express an individual’s opinion.

In seeking to avoid the anonymous vitriol and ad hominem attacks that characterise most comment threads online, we do not have comments enabled on the site. However, we strongly encourage readers who have a strong reaction to a piece (positive, negative or somewhere in between) to submit posts in response. It is our firm belief that allowing for a mix of contributions helps to provide a platform for sharing a range of views on different topics related to Myanmar, from a multitude of perspectives.

In adopting this approach, it will also be the case that, as indicated on our site, we will publish controversial or unpopular perspectives, including opinions that members of our editorial team strongly disagree with. Our editors carefully consider the guidelines in our policy and while we do our best to avoid publishing anything that is abusive, libellous or insulting to individuals, we recognise that some readers will find some of our content distasteful or objectionable. We also reserve the right to refuse to post any submissions.

Having clarified this policy, we also believe that our standard for evaluation and inclusion of different perspectives on the site is itself a potential topic for debate and discussion. Just as we welcome continued submissions in response to any of our posts, we would also be happy to consider submissions that critically reflect on Tea Circle’s stated mission as a platform.

Burmese Language Submissions

Tea Circle is excited to be hosting Burmese translations for select current and upcoming posts on the site. Although we are currently publishing Burmese language content, we are not accepting Burmese language submissions at the moment.

We are planning a special Burmese forum in the coming months and will make a call for submissions on our social media and website. Please check back regularly for updates. If you have any inquiries about the above, contact us at editor@teacircleoxford.com

Types of Submissions

The vast majority of posts on Tea Circle are between 1,000-2,000 words, though both longer and shorter submissions are possible as “notes” (which fall between 500-1,000 words) or “essays” (over 2,000 words).

Research Reports present an opportunity for students, researchers, and practitioners to summarize their current research in an informal manner. As Tea Circle is not an academic journal, but instead seeks to foster discussion and knowledge-sharing within the Burma/Myanmar studies community, we ask that Research Reports be written in an accessible style, without discipline specific-jargon. References to other research or cited works should be included as hyperlinks, where possible; we aim to keep citations, footnotes, and endnotes to a minimum. Brief synopses written to draw attention to a longer piece published elsewhere are welcome.

Notes from the Field are shorter papers, reports, and comments reflecting on ongoing or completed fieldwork, broadly defined. “Notes from the Field” represents an opportunity to report on ongoing or recent events of interest to the community in a timely manner, without the need to first develop a full research report.

News Analyses respond to articles recently featured in the media— whether international or domestic. Submitted News Analyses should include a link to the news item in question, along with full publication information.

Opinion Pieces offer a unique perspective on ongoing debates, discussions, and events, whether in Burma/Myanmar itself, or of interest to the wider Burma/Myanmar studies community.

Interviews conducted with Burma/Myanmar “experts,” broadly defined, are welcome— whether those experts are academics, practitioners, or individuals with on-the-ground knowledge of current events happening in the country. If you are interested in conducting an interview to be featured on Tea Circle, please contact the editor to confirm that such a piece can be featured.

Comments are generally short (under 600 words) but substantive observations that offer a particular perspective or raise questions, perhaps to be discussed further at a later date or future post.

Multimedia pieces— whether audio clips, individual images, photo essays, or videos— are always welcome. Please include a link to an online file, where possible, as well as a description or summary of the submitted piece.

Submission Guidelines

Contributions to Tea Circle should be sent by email to editor@teacircleoxford.com in a word document with minimal formatting. A short biography and byline (under 90 characters) should be included in the document, along with any images for which the author holds copyright or has permission to use. Along with the proposed title for the piece, keywords that describe the topic and content of your submission should also be included.

If submitting images, please do not embed them in the Word document. Instead, attach high-quality images (ideally sized 1200 pixels on the longest side, at 72 dpi) to your initial email submission.

Anonymous Posts or Publishing with a Pseudonym

We recognize that the military coup has heightened security concerns for many of our contributors, whether you are in Myanmar or outside. In order to protect our authors, Tea Circle is offering the opportunity to submit posts anonymously or with a pseudonym.

If you would like to protect your identity in this way, we suggest that you submit your post in one of two ways:

  1. Protonmail: Send an email from your Protonmail account to teacircleoxford@protonmail.com. (NOTE: This method is only fully encrypted if you also use a Protonmail account.)
  2. VPN and Incognito mode: If you are unable to create a Protonmail account, we advise using a VPN and incognito mode in all communications with Tea Circle.

Tea Circle will not share any personal or contact information without your consent. Should you have any further inquiries,  please contact us at  teacircleoxford@protonmail.com or editor@teacircleoxford.com

Citation: Hyperlinks, Footnotes and Best Practices

For the blog format, we encourage authors to limit formal citations and footnotes, although hyperlinks to online sources are always welcome. However, it is still the responsibility of authors to accurately cite someone else’s material, whether direct quotes or someone’s general argument. It is always a good idea to err on the side of thoroughness and generosity in your citations, even for a blog post. When in doubt, please feel free to ask our editorial team.

Plagiarism and Academic Integrity

While submissions to Tea Circle undergo review by two of our editors, it is your responsibility to accurately cite someone else’s work, whether you are using direct quotes or someone’s general argument. Using someone else’s ideas without citation or acknowledgement is plagiarism. Even though it is common for blog posts to include fewer formal citations than academic works, the expectations for accurately and adequately citing someone else’s work remain the same. It is always a good idea to err on the side of thoroughness and generosity in your citations, even for a blog post. When in doubt, please feel free to ask our editorial team.

If you suspect that a piece published on Tea Circle is guilty of plagiarism, please contact us at editor@teacircleoxford.com. We pledge to conduct an immediate review, removing the piece temporarily if appropriate and working to make a prompt decision regarding the allegation. Possible responses could include working with the author to revise the post; removing the post permanently; or other actions depending on the severity of the offense. We reserve the right to remove any post that violates our policies. Tea Circle has editorial discretion in all final decisions regarding publication and continued hosting of a given post.

While we seek to adhere to high standards of academic integrity regarding plagiarism, we also recognize that Tea Circle is a blog that invites and encourages submissions from junior scholars and from contributors who might be unfamiliar with journalistic or academic norms. Our approach, in building a diverse community of commentators focused on Myanmar, is pedagogical and remedial rather than punitive. That is, depending on the nature of the offense, we will most often choose to work with an author to help them understand their mistakes and revise the post appropriately rather than resort to public censure.

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