Coup, King, Crisis

A Critical Interregnum in Thailand

Edited by Pavin Chachavalpongpun and Charnvit Kasetsiri

Coup, King, Crisis

Edited by Pavin Chachavalpongpun and Charnvit Kasetsiri

Distributed for National University of Singapore Press

With a Foreword by Charles Keyes
376 pages | 2 maps | 6 x 9
Paper $38.00 ISBN: 9789813251052 Will Publish February 2020 For sale in North and South America and China only
The seventy-year long reign of King Bhumibol Adulyadej ended in October 2016. With Bhumibol’s death, Thailand lost their longest-serving monarch, and for the first time in decades the country was left wondering what would happen to their most important political institution. Even as the world moves into a new decade, Thailand is still in an interregnum: a time when the old order is dying but a new one struggles to be born. While Bhumibol’s son King Maha Vajiralongkorn was eventually crowned, Thailand still saw a military coup and continues to face political threats from the still-popular former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra.

This volume examines the royal transition in Thailand, from the 2014 coup, through its new constitution in 2017, and up to the 2019 election. It brings together some of the leading writers on Thailand and is the first book-length analysis of this deep transition. The contributors examine how the royal transition sparked a crisis that jeopardized the Thai nation and its institutions, from the politicized judiciary to the troubled Sangha, the order of Buddhist monks. They analyze how the uncertainty influenced all aspects of Thai governance, from foreign policy to economic management, to the troubled human rights situation and spread of self-censorship.
Review Quotes
Michael Herzfeld, Harvard University
“A multifaceted and deeply nuanced probe into the doldrums in which Thailand today seems becalmed . . . . For those who want to understand the relations among Thailand’s complex past, cultural values, and political tensions, this book is essential reading.”
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