In an important public debate concerning recent events in Thailand, a series of international scholars have discussed the rather odd idea of changing Thailand’s name back to Siam. The discussion was kicked off earlier this week when prominent Thai historian Charnvit Kasetsiri argued that “Siam” was more ethnically inclusive than “Thailand.” The discussion has been picked up on the Thailand-Laos-Cambodia (TLC) email list. New Mandala readers who are interested in the implications and origins of the word “Siam” can consult the TLC archive for April 2007. (An early New Mandala post may also be of interest.)

New Mandala is pleased that such a pressing issue is getting concerted scholarly attention! At least 15 contributions in just a few days.

A look at the September 2006 TLC archive shows not a single mention of the coup.