Meeting at the Alliance Franšaise, Chiang
Mai: “Cross National and Cross Cultural Education at Payap University”.
14 May 2019.
A talk by
Thainess (khwam pen thai) is an attribute
deemed to be possessed by all true Thais, but one that has been used as
a political tool throughout the ages and thus interpreted through the
lens of political elites. But what exactly is Thainess? This talk
discusses the results of what is the first survey-based exploration of
this topic allowing us to understand what Thainess means to actual
everyday Thais, rather than to political elites. The survey was
conducted in Chiang Mai on a sample of around 2,000 and posed a simple
open-ended question: What is Thainess? The responses were subsequently
coded, allowing us to explore how these responses varied by various
sectors of Northern Thai society.
Joel Selway (Ph.D. 2009,
University of Michigan) is an associate professor of political science
at Brigham Young University and Director of the Political and Economy
Development Labs (PEDL). He is also the chair of the board for the
Southeast Asia Research Group (SEAREG). His research interests focus on
ethnically divided societies, and especially on how to design
democratic institutions to prevent conflict and enhance coordination
over public goods provision. He has conducted fieldwork in Thailand,
Laos, India and Mauritius. Selway is the author of "Coalitions of the
Well-Being" with Cambridge University Press. His publications have
appeared in World Politics, Political Analysis, Comparative Political
Studies, British Journal of Political Science, Journal of Conflict
Resolution, and Journal of Asian Studies, among others.
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