The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Teza Soe

In Burma, parents use “Lokaniti”, which is a collection of proverbs inherited from our ancestors to teach children over a period of time. The Lokaniti lays down guidelines for social conduct and social discipline which human beings are to abide by if they are to be proper Burmese citizens. Although Lokaniti does not come from Buddhist scriptures, it has a strong religious influence.

The Lokaniti embraces a miscellaneous collection of subjects, and serves as a suitable handbook for the general reader for the study of prudential rules and principles of morality. It is taught in almost every monastic school in Burma, and its inheritance through generations has increased its popularity.

The proverbs and sayings in this work are adopted from the chapter of women’s guidelines in the Lokaniti, highlighting the characteristics of the good and bad wife.
These guidelines may make happy husbands but very unhappy wives.

Originally, the project was made into a photobook. The images are selected from the
book “ The Good, the Bad & the Ugly”.

About the Artist

Artist Website

Teza Soe (born 1988) is a Myanmar artist and photographer based in London. She is currently a PhD candidate at University for the Creative Arts, Farnham researching on “ Redefining feminism in Myanmar; Documentary photography as an activist model “ which uses photography as a tool to investigate women’s situation in Myanmar. Her research and practice recounts the stories and representations of women who have had no voice historically. She also volunteers as Myanmar Programme Manager at Lensational, a non-profit social enterprise that equips marginalised women and girls with photography training and digital skills.