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The Ambiguous Allure of the WestTraces of the Colonial in Thailand$
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Rachel V. Harrison and Peter A. Jackson

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9789622091214

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789622091214.001.0001

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The Ambiguities of Semicolonial Power in Thailand

The Ambiguities of Semicolonial Power in Thailand

(p.37) 1 The Ambiguities of Semicolonial Power in Thailand
The Ambiguous Allure of the West

Peter A. Jackson

Hong Kong University Press

This chapter examines the history of Siamese/Thai attitudes to the West in relation to the situation of both colonized and other nominally independent societies. Drawing on postcolonial understandings of power, culture, and knowledge, it argues that while Siam/Thailand occupied a subordinate position in the Western-dominated world order, it was never a direct colony. The chapter also argues that the notion of semicolonialism provides an avenue to open a dialogue with postcolonial studies while recognizing the ambiguities of Western power in the Thai context.

Keywords:   Siamese/Thai, West, power, culture, knowledge, Siam/Thailand, colony, semicolonialism, ambiguities, Western power

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