Meeting : “Statue-mania in the North! Sculpting and Casting Historical Memory in Northern Thailand”.
12th July 2016.
talk by Taylor Easum
has been a boom industry recently. Both in terms of academic work in
the field, and in terms of more popular acts of memorialization,
monument-building, commemoration, heritage preservation, and nostalgia,
much ink has been spilled over the contested memories of the past. In
Thailand, the late 20th century saw a burst of memorialization in the
form of statuary monuments, a boom described by Grant Evans as
“Statuemania.” This near obsession with building statuary monuments
reached northern Thailand as well, and produced a number of monuments
in Chiang Mai alone, including statues of Kawila, Khruba Sriwichai, and
the famous Three Kings in the city center. By examining both the
histories told by these monuments, and the histories behind their
creation, I hope to offer a glimpse into the erasure of memories and
histories of resistance and local identity in the (internally-)colonial
frontier of Northern Thailand.
Easum is Assistant Professor of History and International Studies at
the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, where he teaches classes on
global history, colonialism and empire, and Southeast Asian history.
This summer, he is leading a study abroad program in Chiang Mai
focusing on global empire throughout Southeast Asia. His research
focuses on the urban history of northern Thailand and neighboring
regions, as well as comparative colonialism and regional identity in
(PDF File for downloading or reading on
line - 8 pages).