The Anniversary of a Massacre and the Death of a Monarch

The Anniversary of a Massacre and the Death of a Monarch by Tyrell Haberkorn in The Journal of Asian Studies, vol. 76, n° 2 (mai 2017)

As part of this year’s anniversary of the October 6, 1976, massacre at Thammasat University, an outdoor exhibit of photographs of the violence and the three preceding years of student and other social movements was displayed upon the very soccer field in the center of campus where students were beaten, shot, lynched, and murdered forty years prior. Several of the photographs were printed on large sheets of acrylic and positioned such that the images of the buildings in the photographs were aligned with the actual buildings, which remain largely unchanged. The most striking of these was a photograph of hundreds of students stripped to the waist who were lying face down on the soccer field prior to being arrested and taken away. At the edge of the image was the top of the university’s iconic dome building, which lined up with the existing building. The organizers explained that their intention was “to reflect a perspective on the past through the eyes of people in the present in order to show the cruelty of humans to one another.” The proximity generated by the image was underlined by the fact that the fortieth anniversary of the massacre and coup in 1976 that led to twelve years of dictatorship was taking place under yet another dictatorship, that of a military junta calling itself the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), which seized power on May 22, 2014, in the twelfth coup since the end of the absolute monarchy on June 24, 1932. Suchada Chakphisut, founding editor of Sarakadee magazine and Thai Civil Rights and Investigative Journalism, who was a first-year Thammasat student during the massacre, began her autobiographical account of the day, written for the anniversary this year, by writing: “We meet every year when 6 October comes around, and with it an inexplicable sadness always takes hold of my psyche. It has grown even more devastating since the 22 May 2014 coup, in which we must face the news of the arrest and detention of activists and those who oppose dictatorship.” This was not a commemoration after dictatorship such as those of the same era held in Argentina or Chile during recent years of democratization, but memories of dictatorship in situ.

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A Lexicon of Repression in Thailand

A Lexicon of Repression in Thailand by Tyrell Haberkorn, 14/06/2017, AsiaNow (AAS blog)

In an essay for the May 2017 issue of the Journal of Asian Studies (“The Anniversary of a Massacre and the Death of a Monarch,” currently free to download), I reflect on the fortieth anniversary of the 6 October 1976 massacre, when state and para-state forces brutally murdered unarmed students at Thammasat University in Bangkok. Unresolved questions about the possible role of the institution of the monarchy in the massacre have been a primary factor both ensuring impunity for the perpetrators and constricting public discussion about the massacre. The anniversary events, held under the military regime of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) and marked by calls for recognition of the humanity of those killed, directly challenged the ongoing impunity of the perpetrators of the massacre. One week after the anniversary, Rama IX, Bhumipol Adulyadej, died and the crown prince, Maha Vajiralongkorn, was named his successor as Rama X.

One of the primary features of the NCPO’s regime has been a sharp spike in prosecution of alleged cases of lèse-majesté, the very accusation used to catalyze the 6 October 1976 massacre. Rightists alleged that the students had staged a mock hanging of the crown prince. My JAS essay on the fortieth anniversary ends with what was then an open question about how the use of the accusation of lèse-majesté may or may not change during the reign of Rama X.

As another anniversary passes, the question is now a markedly less open one. On 22 May 2017, the third anniversary of the coup by the NCPO passed in Thailand. After three years of military rule and the naming of Maha Vajiralongkorn as Rama X, there are no signs of a return to democracy or a letup in the use of the accusation of lèse-majesté to quash dissent anytime soon.

The third anniversary of the 22 May 2014 coup by the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) passed as the vast majority of nearly 70 million Thais went to work and school as usual and the several million tourists who visit each month continued to flow across the borders into the country. But the veneer of daily life hides the quiet battle taking place between the NCPO and those who want to see a return to democracy. Rather than the streets that figured in previous anniversary protests, the very lexicon used to describe the NCPO’s rule is the new terrain of struggle. The NCPO would like to erase the keyword most central to its existence: “coup.”

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Vintage Photographs Capture the Beauty of Classical Dance – Avec les danseuses royales du Cambodge

Photos of Khmer classical dancers printed on canvas are exhibited at the Institut Francais. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)

Vintage Photographs Capture the Beauty of Classical Dance by Michelle Vachon, 15/06/2017, The Cambodia Daily

When George Groslier first approached Nou Nam in March 1927 with the idea of photographing her while she performed Khmer classical dance, she refused. “People no longer know how to dance, she told me with disdain,” he later wrote.

A few minutes later, the dancer—a favorite of both King Norodom and King Sisowath—relented.

Then in her 50s, Nou Nam agreed to help the photographer archive Khmer classical dance movements in photographic form.

As he began to capture the former star dancer, George Groslier realized that “the hand stops two centimeters higher than on Wednesday, and the head turns two degrees more than in Nou Nam’s day,” showing how the dance form had evolved.

For Khmer classical dancers whose slightest movements are painstakingly executed, this was profoundly troubling. Master dancers watching Nou Nam became agitated, he wrote.

Capturing these changing styles for posterity was Groslier’s goal. He wanted to provide a historical record for generations to come.

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Exposition :  « Avec les danseuses royales du Cambodge », 15/06/2017 au 07/09/2017, Galerie de l’Institut Français du Cambodge

En 1927, George Groslier, directeur du musée National, entreprend pour conserver la mémoire des postures de danse du ballet royal, un exceptionnel travail de documentation photographique. Longtemps resté à l’écart, le corpus de négatifs sur verre a été récemment catalogué et numérisé. Après leur présentation au Musée National du Cambodge en 2012 puis à New York, Paris et Siem Reap, ces photographies sont exposées à l’Institut Français du Cambodge.

Exposition conçue par le MNC et l’EFEO à Phnom Penh (avec le soutien de l’IFC et de l’UNESCO)

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Digital Indonesia: Connectivity and Divergence

Edwin Jürriens, Ross Tapsell (eds), Digital Indonesia: Connectivity and Divergence, ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute, 2017

This book places Indonesia at the forefront of the global debate about the impact of « disruptive » digital technologies. Digital technology is fast becoming the core of life, work, culture and identity. Yet, while the number of Indonesians using the internet has followed the upward global trend, some groups — the poor, the elderly, women, the less well-educated, people living in remote communities  — are disadvantaged. This interdisciplinary collection of essays by leading researchers and scholars, as well as e-governance and e-commerce insiders, examines the impact of digitalisation on the media industry, governance, commerce, informal sector employment, education, cybercrime, terrorism, religion, artistic and cultural expression, and much more. It presents groundbreaking analysis of the impact of digitalisation in one of the worlds most diverse, geographically vast nations. In weighing arguments about the opportunities and challenges presented by digitalisation, it puts the very idea of a technological revolution into critical perspective.

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Thailand’s 2010 crackdowns: truth for justice

Thailand’s 2010 crackdowns: truth for justice by Kwanravee Wangudom, 20/06/2017, New Mandala

On the 7th anniversary of the 2010 government crackdown on the Red Shirts, People’s Information Center for the April-May 2010 Crackdowns (PIC) has released an English-language edition of its original 1,398-page long fact-finding report, available for free download.

Truth for Justice, the original fact-finding report of the PIC, was published in Thai in 2012two years after the crackdown on the Red Shirts by the Abhisit Vejjajiva government, which resulted in over 90 deaths and 2,000 injuries. The report came out amidst growing criticisms towards the workings of the two major fact-finding bodies: the government-initiated Truth for Reconciliation Commission of Thailand (TRCT), headed by Kanit Na Nakorn; and the controversial National Human Rights Commission, chaired by Amara Pongsapich.

The aim of the PIC original fact-finding report is to document what occurred in the crackdown. PIC believes that this is the first step to ending the deeply-entrenched culture of impunity in Thailand.

The English-language edition, consisting of six selected chapters from the original report, with added clarifications, is produced in the hope that it will stimulate a wider global discussion on truth, justice and reconciliation in the deeply-divided Thai society, and perhaps elsewhere.

To access the PIC original fact-finding report (in Thai), click here.

For the English-language edition, please follow this link.

Kwanravee Wangudom is a human rights professional and activist. She is the Editor of the English translation of the report.

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Bornéo : dernière terra incognita ?

Colloque international : Bornéo : dernière terra incognita ? 08/09/2017, salle de cinéma, Musée du Quai Branly

Organisée avec le MUSEC (Museo delle Culture de Lugano), cette journée d’étude s’articule autour de sept interventions qui visent à présenter au public une connaissance de Bornéo, par l’analyse de dynamiques qui sont au centre de l’évolution et de la                                    « réappropriation » de son identité.

L’île de Bornéo a de tout temps été un carrefour humain dynamique malgré l’apparent isolement de ses cultures.  Sa taille et sa situation géographique furent stratégiques pour le processus de peuplement pré-austronésien, austronésien et moderne. On retrouve sur ce vaste territoire forestier tout d’abord des traces de civilisations indienne, chinoise, puis malaise, mêlées à l’expansion austronésienne.

Après l’arrivée des Européens au 18e siècle, s’ensuit une longue tradition d’explorateurs et de collecte d’objets appartenant aux “dayak” – les “habitants de l’intérieur” – dont la présence dans les collections occidentales remonte pour certains au 18e siècle.  Avec les artistes d’avant-garde et l’intérêt porté aux arts dits “primitifs” au 20e siècle, des collections privées se constituent. Les grandes capitales européennes comme Amsterdam, Paris ou Berlin favorisent alors la naissance d’un vaste marché international.

Au cours du 20e siècle, l’île, intégrée politiquement au sein des états malais et indonésien, est marginalisée à l’intérieur de ses frontières. De carrefour des cultures, Bornéo devient une région périphérique d’un monde globalisé. De nos jours, cette marginalisation tend à devenir un atout, car elle peut permettre aux habitants de valoriser une identité forte grâce à la réappropriation de ses spécificités culturelles et historiques.

 Programme :

The Philippine Journal of Linguistics (PJL) – FINAL Call for Submissions (2017)

The Philippine Journal of Linguistics (PJL) – FINAL Call for Submissions (2017)

The Philippine Journal of Linguistics (PJL) is the refereed journal of the Linguistic Society of the Philippines. It publishes original theoretical and applied research on various areas of linguistics. As such, it welcomes articles that are related but not limited to the following areas of research:

Theories of language development
Language variation
Descriptive linguistics
Language policy
Language planning
Language pedagogy
Language and power

For more detailed instructions

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Site and Space in Southeast Asia

Map of Rangoon, ca. 1914. Cartographers Wagner and Debes, Leipzig.
In Karl Baedeker, Indien. Handbuch für Reisende. Verlag Karl Baedeker, Leipzig, 1914, p. 256 f

The Power Institute (Sydney) is thrilled to announce a new collaborative research initiative, Site and Space in Southeast Asia.

The project explores the intersections of urban space, art and culture in three cities—Yangon, Myanmar, Penang, Malaysia, and Huế, Vietnam—through collaborative, site-based research. With major funding from the Getty Foundation’s Connecting Art Histories Initiative and partners from within and beyond the region, including National Gallery Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, and Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Site and Space in Southeast Asia, continues our efforts to support innovative research in the art and architectural histories of the region, foster professional networks among early career scholars, and expand our engagement with an ever more global field.

Site and Space in Southeast Asia builds on the success of our first Connecting Art Histories project, Ambitious Alignments: New Histories of Southeast Asian Art. While Ambitious Alignments was centred around individual research projects exploring histories of modern art between 1950 and 1990, Site and Space expands its chronological reach, from the colonial into the postcolonial and contemporary, while shifting focus to site-based work by small teams of researchers. Engaging with cities as sites that generate cultural narratives, researchers will explore spaces of memory, interaction, and production across national and regional boundaries.

While Field Directors will lead research teams in each city, the overall program is directed by Stephen Whiteman, Lecturer in Asian Art at the University of Sydney, with professors Adrian Vickers, Director of Asian Studies, and Mark Ledbury, Director of the Power Institute. Dr Yin Ker of Nanyang Technological University will be joining the project as Field Director for Yangon, while Dr Simon Soon, a University of Sydney graduate and Senior Lecturer at the University of Malaya, will lead the Penang team. A search for the Field Director for Huế is underway; interested candidates are invited to contact Dr Whiteman at with any enquiries.

Site and Space in Southeast Asia will launch with a mini-field school in Singapore in late autumn 2018. A call for participation will be announced in September—please spread the word!

Voir :

Field schools and exchanges – Field School: Rural-Urban Migration in Batam

Field schools and exchanges
Take your studies to Southeast Asia

Combine study and travel by participating in exchange programs or field schools, bringing your new knowledge to life in a different culture.

Field School: Rural-Urban Migration in Batam

There are a number of exciting ways that University of Sydney students can participate in exchange programs or field schools in Southeast Asian countries.

Our flagship field schools bring students from different disciplines together to tackle a real-world problem specific to a country in the region. Our students have undertaken exchanges in Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Singapore, Timor-Leste and Vietnam.

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Research Assistance « Global Leadership Project – University of Texas »

Research Assistance « Global Leadership Project – University of Texas »

Pour en savoir plus

The Global Leadership Project at the University of Texas is looking to recruit country specialists to collect biographical information on political leaders around the world and update this data in our website. Foreign language readers are strongly encouraged to apply. Southeast Asia countries of interest: Cambodia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Timor-Leste (East Timor)

The Global Leadership Project (GLP) is the first dataset to offer biographical information on leaders throughout the world including members of the executive, the legislature, the judiciary, and other elites whose power is of an informal nature. At present, the GLP encompasses 145 sovereign and semisovereign nation-states and 38,085 leaders, each of whom is coded along 31 parameters, producing approximately 1.1 million data points in a cross-sectional format centered on 2010-13. With this data, one can compare the characteristics of leaders within countries, across countries, and across regions. The GLP promises to serve as a fundamental resource for researchers, policymakers, and citizens, and several research papers are currently under review or in progress.

We are about the launch the second wave of data collection with a grant from the World Bank and we are looking for individuals to take a strong role in such tasks as:

(a)  Look for biographical information of political leaders of your country of expertise such as leaders of the judiciary, executive, and members of the parliament. This data is usually available online. In countries where the data is not easily available in online sources, the coder is expected to make research in other sources (i.e. newspapers, parliamentary archives, etc.) where the data might be available.

(b) Update the data found in our website

The work will be done remotely. So, there is no need to be in the US or in Austin to work with us. Some stipend will be paid per country coded, i.e. around $450. However, the “payoff” from this project would be primarily in the form of name recognition in your website under the data one collected and CV improvement purposes. We will fully attribute credit to the country experts for the country on which they work.

If you are interested please let us know by sending a copy of your CV, along with your country(ies) of interest to

Call for Papers « Environmental Issues and Human Health in Southeast Asia »

Call for Papers « Environmental Issues and Human Health in Southeast Asia »

Association for Asian Studies conference – Washington, D.C.

March 22-25, 2018

Deadline July 1, 2017

Web announcement:

The Southeast Asia Council (SEAC) of the Association for Asian Studies (AAS) is seeking paper proposals from up-and-coming scholars to join a “Rising Voices” panel on the broad topic of “Environmental Issues and Human Health in Southeast Asia.” We seek to recruit three early career scholars from Southeast Asian countries in order to form a panel for eventual inclusion in the 2018 Annual Conference of the Association for Asian Studies.

Postdoctoral fellowship : Japan-ASEAN Platform for Transdisciplinary Studies


The Center for Southeast Asian Studies (CSEAS) at Kyoto University, Japan, invites applications for a two-year CSEAS Postdoctoral Fellowship under its program “Japan-ASEAN Platform for Transdisciplinary Studies.”

Southeast Asia, through its regional inter-governmental institution of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), has emerged as a hub for Asian community-building. The highly diverse societies in this region have undergone rapid social, economic, political and environmental changes.

Under this six-year program funded by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), we aim to establish several sub-projects that are solution-oriented. By developing a “transdisciplinary platform”, we seek to generate a practical dialogue between academic and non-academic stakeholders for transformative research on the ASEAN region.

We attend to a variety of issues, such as:

1) environmental degradation
2) natural resource governance
3) economic growth and distribution
4) democratization
5) aging, health, and welfare
6) urbanization and depopulation
7) emerging infectious diseases
8) natural disasters
The root causes of these pressing issues must be understood and solutions must be sought beyond the confinement of nationalism, academic disciplinarity, and barriers separating academic and non-academic stakeholders.


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Temporary Academic Position Southeast Asian Studies University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Temporary Academic Position Southeast Asian Studies University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Deadline: 30 June 2017

Pour en savoir plus

The Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Michigan invite applications for a one-semester Lecturer I position starting September 1, 2017 Responsibilities include: planning, teaching, and grading SEAS 501/SEAS-455, an undergraduate-graduate level interdisciplinary introduction to the study of Southeast Asia including geological, ecological, social, political, cultural, and language issues. The Lecturer will also teach an additional course related to their field of interest. The appointment level will be 66%. Applicants must have a Ph.D. with a focus on Southeast Asia in a relevant field such as history, anthropology, literature, or political science. Teaching experience at the college/university level is preferred. Preference will be given to candidates who are familiar with current social, political, and cultural issues and are able to advise graduate students.

Temporary Academic Position Southeast Asia Historian Loyola University New Orleans

Deadline : 28 juin 2017

The Department of History at Loyola University New Orleans is seeking applications for a one-year position of Visiting Assistant Professor who specializes in African, South Asian, or Southeast Asian history. Transnational and diaspora specialties also encouraged. Applicants must be able to teach the Global History survey as well as
courses in their field of specialization, for a total course load of 4-4. A supplementary field in the history of law is preferred. All applicants must have the Ph. D. completed by August 2017. Please submit electronically a letter of application, CV, teaching philosophy, sample syllabus for an introductory-level course, and two letters of
recommendation to Chair, History Search Committee at, no later than June 28, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. C.S.T. The letter of application should include a description of secondary fields and possible course offerings.

Loyola University New Orleans is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.
Women, minorities, veterans and individuals in all legally protected groups are encouraged to submit applications.

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9e colloque international sur Les langues et la linguistique austronésiennes et papoues (APLL9) 21-23 juin 2017

9e colloque international sur Les langues et la linguistique austronésiennes et papoues (APLL9) 21-23 juin 2017

Le LACITO a le plaisir d’accueillir le neuvième colloque sur les Langues et la linguistique austronésiennes et papoues(APLL9).

Contrairement aux précédentes éditions qui avaient eu lieu au Royaume-Uni, le 9e colloque (APLL9) aura lieu cette fois-ci à Paris – plus précisément sur le campus de l’ lnstitut national des langues et civilisations orientales (INALCO), notre partenaire universitaire.

Notre conférencière invitée sera le Dr Antoinette Schapper (Univ. de Cologne ; KITLV)