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Travel Guide 2   >   Thailand   >   History

   
 

Thai History


Here are some books about the history of Thailand:


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Books about Thai History


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An Illustrated History of Thailand

By John Hoskin

John Beaufoy Publishing
Paperback (240 pages)

An Illustrated History of Thailand
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Product Description:

This fully illustrated history is divided geographically according to the sequence of succeeding Thai kingdoms. Each section follows a historical chronology, covering accounts of major events during each reign, with an assessment of the character of individual kings and their particular achievements, together with those of other major players. This record of events is blended with descriptive passages about monuments surviving today that are relevant to and help illuminate the history. Political development is thus paralleled by Thailand’s cultural development, especially in relation to the religious and royal architecture.

Thailand’s historical progression has been complex, and although the foundations of national identity – religion and monarchy in particular – were established in the earliest days of statehood dating back to the 13th century, it is only in comparatively recent times that all elements – social, political, cultural and linguistic –have cohered into what is recognizable today as Thai and Thailand. By linking the text to existing landmarks the history provides both an enjoyable read in its own right and a fascinating guide to the monuments and buildings that visitors can see on their travels around the country.

A History of Thailand

By Chris Baker

Cambridge University Press
Paperback (344 pages)

A History of Thailand
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  • Cambridge University Press
Product Description:
A History of Thailand offers a lively and accessible account of Thailand's political, economic, social and cultural history. This book explores how a world of mandarin nobles and unfree peasants was transformed and examines how the monarchy managed the foundation of a new nation-state at the turn of the twentieth century. The authors capture the clashes between various groups in their attempts to take control of the nation-state in the twentieth century. They track Thailand's economic changes through an economic boom, globalisation and the evolution of mass society. This edition sheds light on Thailand's recent political, social and economic developments, covering the coup of 2006, the violent street politics of May 2010, and the landmark election of 2011 and its aftermath. It shows how in Thailand today, the monarchy, the military, business and new mass movements are players in a complex conflict over the nature and future of the country's democracy.

A History of Thailand

By Chris Baker

Cambridge University Press
Released: 2009-04-14
Kindle Edition (336 pages)

A History of Thailand
 
Product Description:
In A History of Thailand, Chris Baker and Pasuk Phongpaichit reveal how a world of mandarin nobles and unfree labour evolved into a rural society of smallholder peasants and an urban society populated mainly by migrants from southern China. They trace how a Buddhist cosmography adapted to new ideas of time and space, and a traditional polity was transformed into a new nation-state under a strengthened monarchy. The authors cover the contests between urban nationalists, ambitious generals, communist rebels, business politicians, and social movements to control the nation-state and redefine its purpose. They describe the dramatic changes wrought by a booming economy, globalization, and the evolution of mass society. Finally, they show how Thailand's path is still being contested by those who believe in change from above and those who fight for democracy and liberal values. Drawing on new Thai-language research, this second edition brings the Thai story up to date and includes a new section on the 2006 coup and the restoration of an elected government in 2008.

Thai Military Power: A Culture of Strategic Accommodation (NIAS Monographs)

By Gregory Vincent Raymond

NIAS Press
Released: 2018-05-31
Paperback (304 pages)

Thai Military Power: A Culture of Strategic Accommodation (NIAS Monographs)
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Being at the centre of the vital Asia–Pacific region, Thailand is important. But, despite its large population and powerful military forces performing significant roles in state and society, Thailand has little military power. Why is this? Using strategic culture as an analytical framework, this book portrays the Thai state as an accommodative actor. When Western empires dominated in Asia, Thailand ‘bent in the wind’ to preserve its independence by a limited trading of territory and sovereignty. This policy continues today in different forms. A key feature is that military organizational culture reinforces a state ideology of royalist nationalism, in turn reinforcing the national strategic culture. Significant here is internal political acceptance not just of military domination in civil–military relations but also of the Thai military’s limitations in state-on-state combat. The author finds such ‘underbalancing’ – not responding to threat, or responding inadequately – elsewhere in Southeast Asia, too.

Thailand's Secret War: OSS, SOE and the Free Thai Underground during World War II (Cambridge Military Histories)

By E. Bruce Reynolds

Cambridge University Press
Paperback (484 pages)

Thailand s Secret War: OSS, SOE and the Free Thai Underground during World War II (Cambridge Military Histories)
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Despite its 1941 alliance with Japan, Thai leaders managed to establish clandestine relations with China, Britain and the United States, each of which had ambitions for postwar influence in Bangkok. Based largely on recently declassified intelligence records, this narrative history thoroughly explores these relations, details Allied secret operations and sheds new light on the intense rivalry between the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) and the U.S. Office of Strategic Services (OSS).

Thailand's Political History: From the 13th century to recent times

By Barend Jan Terwiel

River Books
Released: 2012-10-12
Kindle Edition (328 pages)

Thailand s Political History: From the 13th century to recent times
 
Product Description:
First appearing in 2005 and quickly selling out, this fully revised edition of Thailand’s Political History continues in the same style as the first but with its scope dramatically widened. While the first edition began with a portrait of late Ayutthayan society, the new edition steps back to the thirteenth century, tackling some of the most topical and pressing historical debates at present. It discusses the development and evolution of the Siamese state from the early Sukhothai period through the fall of Ayutthaya to the rise of the Chakri dynasty in the late eighteenth century and its consolidation of power in the nineteenth. Moving into the twentieth century it traces the emergence of the Thai nation state, the large-scale investments in modern infrastructure and the concomitant economic expansion that have occurred since the 1950s onwards.
A new final chapter brings the reader up-to-date and addresses Thailand’s current political situation spanning the rise and fall of Thaksin Shinawatra to the divisive and at times violent polarisation of Thai society. It traces the emergence of the rival Yellow and Red shirt protest groups, the takeover of Suvarnabhumi International Airport by the PAD and the occupation of Ratchaprasong intersection by the UDD and their eventual violent dispersal by the Thai military.
Often at variance with the more dominant interpretations of nationalistic
history and with a strong reliance upon primary sources, Barend J. Terwiel’s
Thailand’s Political History makes a refreshing assessment of past events possible.

A History of Ayutthaya: Siam in the Early Modern World

By Chris Baker

Cambridge University Press
Released: 2017-05-11
Paperback (342 pages)

A History of Ayutthaya: Siam in the Early Modern World
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Early European visitors placed Ayutthaya alongside China and India as the great powers of Asia. Yet in 1767 the city was destroyed and its history has been neglected. This book is the first study of Ayutthaya from its emergence in the thirteenth century until its fall. It offers a wide-ranging view of social, political, and cultural history with focus on commerce, kingship, Buddhism, and war. By drawing on a wide range of sources including chronicles, accounts by Europeans, Chinese, Persians, and Japanese, law, literature, art, landscape, and language, the book presents early Siam as a 'commercial' society, not the peasant society usually assumed. Baker and Phongpaichit attribute the fall of the city not to internal conflict or dynastic decline but failure to manage the social and political consequences of prosperity. This book is essential reading for all those interested in the history of Southeast Asia and the early modern world.

The Food of Northern Thailand

By Austin Bush

Clarkson Potter
Released: 2018-10-23
Hardcover (336 pages)

The Food of Northern Thailand
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Food of Northern Thailand is a beautiful deep dive into the regional cuisine of northern Thailand with a documentarian's approach and a photographer's eye.

The food of northern Thailand is a world away from the highly refined, royal court- and Chinese-influenced style of cooking in Bangkok--the Thai food that most of us are familiar with. It's a cuisine with its own distinct identity, one that is rustic and earthy, meaty and fragrant; one with roots in the Thai repertoire but with branches that extend into unfamiliar areas; a cuisine that feels ancient, but is ever evolving.
    A writer, photographer, and travel-guide writer, Austin Bush has lived in Thailand for nearly 20 years. In this book, Bush travels across northern Thailand to talk to the region's home cooks, academics, restaurateurs, writers, and hawkers. Their recipes and stories, along with Bush's photographs, capture the people, countryside, markets, and of course, dishes and cooking techniques of northern Thailand. Each of the chapters in the book will focus on a single province, giving a snapshot of the dishes, staple ingredients, cooking methods, and people specific to that area.


 
 
 

 
 
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