THONGCHAI Winichakul

THONGCHAI Winichakul

Inter-disciplinary Studies Center・Chief Senior Researcher

Research Field:
The intellectual transition to modernity in Siam in the mid- 19th to early 20th century, from geographical knowledge and map, historiography and historical ideology, the emergence of Buddhism as a national identity, to the social order and hierarchy. Upcoming project: the transition to the modern rule of law in Siam. Nationalism in Southeast Asia. Current political and cultural issues in Thailand, especially the political crisis since 2006. Currently: writing a book on the memories of the 1976 massacre in Bangkok.

Education / Research Experience

BA (First Class Honour), Thammasat University, Thailand, 1981
MA, University of Sydney, Australia, 1984
PhD, University of Sydney, Australia, 1988

Professional Career:
Lecturer at Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand, 1988–1991
Editorial Board of the journals South East Asia Research (UK), 2009–
Editorial Board of the journals Modern Asian Studies (UK), 2009–
Assistant Professor, Associate Professor and Professor of History, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA,1991–2016
Co-editor of the Southeast Asia Series for University of Wisconsin Press, 2003–2016
Emeritus Professor, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2016–

Awards and Honers:
The John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, 1994
The Harry J. Benda Award, AAS for the book Siam Mapped, 1995
Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, class of 2003, 2003
Grand Prize for the Asia Pacific Book Award, the Asian Affairs Research Council, Japan, for the Japanese translation of Siam Mapped by Professor Yoneo Ishii, 2004
President of the Association for Asian Studies (AAS), 2013/2014

Major Works

  • 1994 Siam Mapped: A History of the Geo-body of a Nation. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 280 pp. + illus. & maps;
    awarded the Harry J. Benda Prize from the Association for Asian Studies (1995); Japanese translation received the Grand Prize of Asia Pacific Book Award from the Asian Affairs Research Council (2004); Thai edition 2013; Chinese edition 2016; Korean edition forthcoming. The journal SOJOURN (Apr 2009) regards it as one of the "most influential books of Southeast Asian Studies"
  • 2017 Thais/Others, Nonthaburi: Fa Diew Kan Publishing, 244 pp.
  • 2016 The Face of Royal-nationalism in Thai Historiography, Nonthaburi: Fa Diew Kan Publishing, 260 pp.
  • 2015 6 October: Unforgettable but Unable to Remember, Nonthaburi: Fa Diew Kan, 267 pp.
  • 2013 Democracy with the Monarchy above Politics, Bangkok: Fa Diew Kan, 328 pp.
  • 2005 Going Beyond the Post-1973 Democracy, Bangkok: the 14 October Foundation, 102 pp.
  • 2016 "Thailand's Hyper-royalism: Its past Success and Present Predicament", Trends in Southeast Asia, no.7, Singapore: ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute, 2016. 36 pp.
  • 2015 "Thailand's Royal Democracy in Crisis", Newsletter no. 72, Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Kyoto University, pp. 4-6.
  • 2015 "Fabrication, Stealth, and Copying of Historical Writings: the Historiographical Misconducts of Mr. Kulap of Siam", A Sarong for Clio, Cornell Southeast Asia Program, pp. 41-61.
  • 2015 "Buddhist Apologetics and a Genealogy of Comparative Religion in Siam", NUMEN International Review for the History of Religions, 62 (2015), pp. 76–99.
  • 2014 "Asian Studies across Academies: the AAS Presidential Address", Journal of Asian Studies, 73:4 (November 2014), pp 879–897.
  • 2014 "Modern Historiography in Southeast Asia: the case of Thailand's Royal-Nationalist History," in A Companion to Global Historical Thought, eds. Prasenjit Duara, Viren Murthy and Andrew Sartori, Wiley Blackwell, pp. 257–268.
  • 2014 "The Monarchy and Anti-Monarchy: Two Elephants in the Room of Thai Politics and the State of Denial" in Good Coup Gone Bad, ed. Pavin Chachavalpongpun, Singapore: ISEAS, pp. 79-108.
  • 2013 co-author with Eric Taggliacozzo, "Gradations of colonialism in Southeast Asia's 'in-between' places" in The Routledge Handbook of Southeast Asian History, ed. Norman G. Owen, London: Routledge, pp.36-45.
  • 2011 "Siam's Colonial Conditions and the Birth of Thai History," in Unraveling Myths in Southeast Asian Historiography, ed. Volker Grabowsky, the volume in honor of Bass Terwiel, Bangkok: Rivers Books, pp. 23-45.
  • 2009 "Coming to Terms with the West, Intellectual Strategies of Bifurcation and Post-Westernism in Siam," in The Ambiguous Allure of the West: Traces of Colonialism in Thailand, eds. Rachel Harrison and Peter Jackson, Hong Kong University Press, pp. 135-151.
  • 2008 "Toppling Democracy," Journal of Contemporary Asia, 38, 1, pp. 11-37.
  • 2005 "Trying to Locate Southeast Asia from Its Navel: Where is Southeast Asian Studies in Thailand?" in Locating Southeast Asia: Geographies of Knowledge and Politics of Space, eds. Henk Schulte Nordholt, Paul Kratoska and Remco Ruben, Athens: Ohio University Press, pp. 113-132.
  • 2003 "Writing at the Interstices: Southeast Asian Historians and Post-National Histories in Southeast Asia", lead article in New Terrains in Southeast Asian History, eds. Abu Talib Ahmad and Tan Liok Ee, Athens: Ohio University Press, pp. 3-29.
  • 2000 "The Quest for 'Siwilai': A geographical discourse of Civilizational Thinking in the Late 19th and early 20th Century Siam", Journal of Asian Studies 59, 3, pp.528-549. 3-29.
  • 2000 "The Others Within: Travel and Ethno-spatial Differentiation of Siamese Subjects, 1885-1910," lead article in Civility and Savagery: the Differentiation of Peoples within the Tai Speaking Polities, ed. Andrew Turton, London: Curzon Press, pp.38-62.
  • 1995 "The Changing Landscape of the Past: New Histories in Thailand since 1973," Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 26, 1 (1995), pp. 99-120.