Thai historical writing

Jory, Patrick (2011). Thai historical writing. In Axel Schneider and Daniel Woolf (Ed.), The Oxford history of historical writing. Volume 5: 1945 to the present (pp. 539-558) Oxford, U.K: Oxford University Press.

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Name Description MIMEType Size Downloads
Author Jory, Patrick
Title of chapter Thai historical writing
Title of book The Oxford history of historical writing. Volume 5: 1945 to the present
Place of Publication Oxford, U.K
Publisher Oxford University Press
Publication Year 2011
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Open Access Status
Series Oxford History of Historical Writing
ISBN 9780199225996
Editor Axel Schneider
Daniel Woolf
Volume number 5
Chapter number 26
Start page 539
End page 558
Total pages 20
Total chapters 32
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted Abstract/Summary
When the modern, scientific form of history was developing in the late nineteenth-century kingdom of Siam, the word for ' history' still used at the royal court was phongsawadan, literally meaning 'lineage of avatar (incarnation of the god Vishnu). 'This term originally referred to the dynastic records of the Thai kings - the avatars of Vishnu- first of the former kingdom of Ayuthaya (1351-1767), and then of the kingdoms of Thonburi (1767-82) and Bangkok (or 'Ratanakosin', 1782- present), composed by court chroniclers. As the limitations of the former term became apparent, eventually a new name, prawattisat, was coined, by which the discipline of history in Thailand has been known ever since. Yet despite its new name, modern history-writing in Thailand remained dominated by the presence of the monarchy. In addition to the quasi-divine status of the kings in traditional historiography, the kings acquired a newer significance in the tumultuous modern era. While European colonization was the great historical rupture that thrust oth er Southeast Asian kingdoms into modernity, Siam was not directly colonized. Credit for the modernization of the Thai kingdom and the preservation of fnrmal political independence-two central ideas in the formulation of Thai nationalism- was written into official history as being due to the genius of the kings.
Q-Index Code B1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

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Created: Tue, 22 Mar 2011, 16:00:33 EST by Dr Patrick Jory on behalf of School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry