Thongchai Winichakul (Thai : ธงชัย วินิจจะกูล; RTGS: Thongchai Winitchakun; IPA: [tʰōŋ.tɕʰāj wí.nít.tɕà.kūːn] ; born 1957 ), is a Thai historian and researcher of Southeast Asian studies. He is professor emeritus of Southeast Asian history at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and a chief senior researcher at the Japanese Institute of Developing Economies. He was the president for the Association for Asian Studies in 2013. He has had a major impact on the concept of Thai nationalism.
Thongchai is of Sino-Thai descent,was born and grew up in Bangkok. He was a student organizer and political activist while still in high school. He became even more involved in pro-democracy movements while in his first two years as an undergraduate at Thammasat University in Bangkok. Student and labor organizing had blossomed during and after the popular uprising of 14 October 1973.
But following the return of disempowered military dictator Thanom Kittikachorn and the resignation of Prime Minister Seni Pramoj, Thongchai and other student leaders organized a fresh wave of protests centered at Thammasat University. These culminated in a large rally that grew through the night of 5 October 1976. The next morning, 6 October, the Thai military surrounded the Thammasat campus and attacked the students in what has been described as the "Thammasat University massacre" in which at least 46 people were killed, some even being raped, hung, or burned to death. Many students escaped. Thousands of students were arrested, though 19 were eventually imprisoned, including Thongchai. Various organizations, including Amnesty International, advocated for his release as a prisoner of conscience. He was released on 16 September 1978 and allowed to return to finish his education at Thammasat on the condition that he was not involved in further political activities. He later went to Sydney, Australia, for his graduate education.
Thongchai completed his Bachelor of Arts degree with first class honors from Thammasat University in 1981. He received his master's degree with honors from University of Sydney in 1984. In 1988, he was conferred his doctoral degree from the same university. Subsequently, he returned to Bangkok to lecture at Thammasat University until 1991.
He was then appointed assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin. He remained in Madison, being promoted to associate professor in 1995, and full professor in 2001. He was assigned to both the Department of History and the Center for Southeast Asian Studies. Among other positions, he served as director of the Center for Southeast Asian Studies from 1997 to 1999, and director of graduate studies of the Department of History from 2008. He retired as professor emeritus in 2016.
His best-known academic work is his book Siam Mapped, published in 1994, which critiqued existing theories of Thai historiography. In its Japanese translation, the book won the Grand Prize of the 16th Asian Pacific Awards from the Asian Affairs Research Council.According to the Sojourn journal, it is one of the "most influential books of Southeast Asian Studies".
Since 1991, he has been a member of the Association for Asian Studies (AAS), chairing its Southeast Asia Council and serving on its executive board in 1996–1997.In 2012, he was vice president of the AAS, and in 2013, president. In 1994, he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. Thongchai was named to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2003. He was a principal research fellow at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore from 2010 to 2012. In 2017, he became a chief senior researcher at the Inter-disciplinary Studies Center of the Institute of Developing Economies (IDE) in Chiba, Japan.
Ram Khamhaeng or Pho Khun Ram Khamhaeng Maharat, also spelled Ramkhamhaeng, was the third king of the Phra Ruang Dynasty, ruling the Sukhothai Kingdom from 1279 to 1298, during its most prosperous era.
Sirindhorn International Institute of Technology (SIIT) is a semi-autonomous institute of technology established in 1992 within Thammasat University. It is located in Pathum Thani, Thailand. One of Thailand's research universities, it offers science, technology and engineering education, as well as related management programs. All are international programs, with English language as a medium of instruction. The institute is part of the Links to Asia by Organizing Traineeship and Student Exchange network, an international consortium of universities in Europe and Asia.
Thammasat University (TU), is a public research university in Thailand with campuses in Tha Phra Chan near the Grand Palace in the heart of Bangkok Old City, in Rangsit which is 42 kilometers north of Bangkok, in Pattaya, a popular seaside district in the Eastern Seaboard, and in Lampang Province near Chiang Mai.
Puey Ungphakorn, MBE, was a Thai economist who served as Governor of the Bank of Thailand and Rector of Thammasat University. He was the author of From Tomb to Womb: The Quality of Life of a South-East Asian, which to date remains one of the most influential writings about social security in Thailand.
Prince Tisavarakumarn, the Prince Damrong Rajanubhab was the founder of the modern Thai educational system as well as the modern provincial administration. He was an autodidact, a (self-taught) historian, and one of the most influential Thai intellectuals of his time.
Maṇḍala is a Sanskrit word meaning 'circle'. The mandala is a model for describing the patterns of diffuse political power distributed among Mueang or Kedatuan (principalities) in early Southeast Asian history, when local power was more important than the central leadership. The concept of the mandala balances modern tendencies to look for unified political power, i.e., the power of large kingdoms and nation states of later history — an inadvertent byproduct of 15th century advances in map-making technologies. In the words of O. W. Wolters who further explored the idea in 1982:
The map of earlier Southeast Asia which evolved from the prehistoric networks of small settlements and reveals itself in historical records was a patchwork of often overlapping mandalas.
Surin Pitsuwan was a Thai politician. He was a Thai Malay from Nakhon Si Thammarat.
Thanin Kraivichien is a Thai former judge, politician and law professor. He was the prime minister of Thailand between 1976 and 1977. Subsequently, he was a member of the Privy Council until 2016.
Thai Studies, a branch of Asian studies, is the multidisciplinary study of Thailand and the Thai peoples. It calls upon the academic disciplines of history, anthropology, religious studies, political science, Thai language, Thai literature, musicology and the physical sciences such as geology.
Southeast Asian studies (SEAS) refers to research and education on the language, culture, and history of the different states and ethnic groups of Southeast Asia. Some institutions refer to this discipline as ASEAN Studies since most of the countries that they study belong to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations or ASEAN. Definitions of what constitutes Southeast Asia differ between scholars, which blurs the boundaries between Southeast Asian studies and other regional studies like Oriental studies and post-colonial studies. Southeast Asian studies incorporates anthropology, religious studies, linguistics, and international relations.
The Thammasat University massacre was an attack by Thai state forces and far-right paramilitaries on student protesters on the campus of Thammasat University and the adjacent Sanam Luang Square in Bangkok, Thailand, on 6 October 1976. Prior to the massacre, four to five thousand students from various universities had demonstrated for more than a week against the return of former military dictator Thanom Kittikachorn to Thailand from Singapore.
Duncan McCargo is Director of the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies and Professor of Political Science at the University of Copenhagen. He is currently on leave from his post as Professor of Political Science at the University of Leeds. Since 2015, he has held a shared appointment at Columbia University, where he is a Visiting Professor of Political Science and taught every spring semester until 2019. McCargo is also a visiting scholar at the Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University, and an associate fellow of the New-York-based Asia Society. He holds three degrees from the University of London: a First in English ; an MA in Area Studies (1990); and a PhD in Politics (1993). He has also taught at Queen's University, Belfast, and at Kobe Gakuin University, Japan. In 2006-07, he was a visiting senior research fellow at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore. He served as a distinguished visiting professor at Universiti Utara Malaysia in September 2011. During the 2015-16 academic year, he was a Visitor at the School of Social Science, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton.
Charnvit Kasetsiri is a Thai historian. He is a professor emeritus of the Thammasat University and was its rector in 1994–1995.
The Ram Khamhaeng Inscription, formally known as Sukhothai Inscription No. 1, is a stone stele bearing inscriptions which have traditionally been regarded as the earliest example of the Thai script. Discovered in 1833 by King Mongkut, it was eventually deciphered and dated to 1292. The text gives, among other things, a description of the Sukhothai Kingdom during the time of King Ram Khamhaeng, to whom it is usually attributed. The inscription had immense influence over the development of Thai historiography from the early 20th century, which came to regard Sukhothai as the first Thai kingdom.
Awadh Kishore Narain was an Indian historian, numismatist and archaeologist, who has published and lectured extensively on the subjects related to South and Central Asia. He was well known for his book, The Indo Greeks, published by Oxford University Press in 1956, in which he discussed the thesis of British historian Sir William Woodthorpe Tarn.
Lauriston Sharp was a Goldwin Smith Professor of Anthropology and Asian Studies at Cornell University. He was the first person appointed in anthropology at the university, and he created its Southeast Asia Program, research centers in Asia and North and South America, a multidisciplinary faculty and strong language program. He was a founding member of the Society for Applied Anthropology and a founding trustee of the Asia Society.
Neal Hirsh Ulevich is an American photographer. He won a Pulitzer Prize in 1977 for "photographs of disorder and brutality in the streets of Bangkok".
Kittisak Prokati is a Thai legal scholar. He is assistant professor of comparative law, civil law and philosophy of law at the Faculty of Law, Thammasat University.
Worachet Pakeerut is a Thai legal scholar specialising in constitutional and administrative law and a professor at the Faculty of Law, Thammasat University.