The king never smiles: a biography of Thailand's Bhumibol . words and names, so I have tried to work with commonly accepted English spell-. The king never smiles- a biography of Thailand's Bhumibol Adulyadej By Paul M. orbureforha.ml - Download as PDF File .pdf) or read online. Kevin Hewison, review of The King Never Smiles. A Biography of Thai- land's Bhumibol Adulyadej, by Paul Handley, Journal of Historical. Biography 4 ( Autumn.
|Language:||English, Portuguese, Hindi|
|Genre:||Business & Career|
|ePub File Size:||24.52 MB|
|PDF File Size:||14.21 MB|
|Distribution:||Free* [*Registration Required]|
New Book - The King Never Smiles: A Biography of Thailand's Bhumibol Adulyadej. Date: 1/31/ ISBN: Trade Paperback (English). Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Early on, Handley declares that current king of an American journalist who reported from Bangkok for many years, has written one of the most important books on Thailand to appear in English. Thailand's Bhumibol Adulyadej, the only king ever born in the United States, came to the throne of his country in and at the time of his death, in October.
Not easy going but if you find it difficult read the next few chapters and then come back to it as you'll find it easier once you see the real life examples Second there is the description of the efforts of a few powerful and ambitious aristocrats in the Court to rebuild the power and prestige of the monarchy by making it more relevant In some ways this feels like 3 books: First we have a fairly complex and scholarly introduction to the semi-religious concepts of the Devaraja and the Dhammaraja.
Not easy going but if you find it difficult read the next few chapters and then come back to it as you'll find it easier once you see the real life examples Second there is the description of the efforts of a few powerful and ambitious aristocrats in the Court to rebuild the power and prestige of the monarchy by making it more relevant to the modern world and the real needs and concerns of the Thai people. This then moves smoothly into the period where the King, undeniably a good and caring man, grows into and becomes the Dhammaraja ideal.
Finally, the bit all Thai readers have been waiting for, Handley dishes a little dirt about the scandals and suspected scandals surrounding the family. This bit gets a wee bit tedious after a while even if it does help demonstrate some aspects of the conscious controlled attempt to create and maintain the strong monarchy Right now, with Thaksin on everyone's minds and the King's possible departure a constant concern for many , this book is highly topical.
Will the Dhammaraja monarchy survive the succession - especially with ambitious and apparently unscrupulous politicians in the background trying to take on the mantle of the "one who really cares" and further their own aims and objectives?
My one criticism is that Handley sometimes tries a little too hard to make the facts fit the theory rather than adapting the theory to the facts. He is most uncomfortable, it seems to me, when he has to reconcile the King's undeniably genuine care and concern about his people with the book's underlying idea that the whole Dhammaraja idea was little more than a political power ploy dreamed up and executed by a few very able and intelligent aristocrats.
The King Never Smiles
The King believes he has the duty to be the Dhammaraja - he is not playing a puppet role. It's often interesting to discuss this book gently with Thai friends. Many or most educated Thais accept unquestioningly the standard schoolbook line that the original overthrow of the absolute monarchy was in fact a move by the then King to modernise the system and bring in democracy.
The idea that the role of the modern monarchy might have been somehow manufactured is a new one for them.
And it is good, though I think it also has its limits, both for what I wanted and in other contexts. The book, taken broadly, is more or less a supplementary history of Thailand, partially since , but mostly from , a history that aims to integrate the role of the monarchy in terms of its influence on the political life of This was a strange one-- I wanted to understand what was happening in Thailand a little better, and my friend Sean suggested this, saying he'd heard it was pretty good.
Skip to main content. A Biography of Thailand's Bhumibol Adulyadej.
The King Never Smiles?
View Inside Price: Description Reviews Table of Contents. Handley takes full note of Bhumibol's achievements in art, in sports and jazz, and he credits the king's lifelong dedication to rural development and the livelihoods of his poorest subjects.
When at nineteen Bhumibol assumed the throne, the Thai monarchy had been stripped of power and prestige. Paul M. Handley is a freelance journalist who lived and worked as a foreign correspondent in Asia for more than twenty years, including thirteen in Thailand. The story he uncovers is fascinating.
Just as important, and perhaps more ominous, the book raises questions about how Thailand will adjust to its first real change in government in more than 60 years without the leadership of the year-old king.
Naval Institute. The King Never Smiles is a daring, landmark work, clearly based on extensive research, which deserves much praise.
It joins a small but growing body of proactive literature relating to kingship and politics in Thailand today and is certainly the most critical of anything previously published.
As such it should compel future writers on Thailand to pay heed to the contemporary role of monarchy in Thai culture, society and politics.It has been marked by the very sad, tragic violent events of , and that Thais should and must not forget — and lets hope Thai students of the future gets a more accurate account of events in even-handed perspectives and relative to the contexts that they occured.
His continued charge that I did is quite bizarre. What stops Thailand from implementing progressive tax system, agrarian reform, universal health care, free education, etc.?
And given the lese majeste law, would it be possible for you or me to state publicly who was behind the massacre, and who ultimately gained politically from the massacre? Regardless, there is no need for monarchy: Or are they merely a new set of views that can be ignored for the sake of stability, or, for the sake or respecting tradition and history?
The story he uncovers is fascinating.