This essay clarifies the process by which archeological administration was introduced in modern Thailand in the period from the First World War to the 1932 Revolution. A major turning point was the replacement of German linguist Oskar Frankfurter as chief librarian of the Wachirayan Library by French epigraphist George Cœdès, as a result of Thailand’s involvement in the war on the side of the Allies. Since Cœdès had settled in Thailand, strong ties developed between its cultural administration and the École française d'Extrême-Orient (French School of Asian Studies). On the strength of this relationship, the French government proposed that the Thai government set up an archeological service. In response to the French request, Prince Damrong drafted the Decree of Investigation and Conservation of Antiquities, the first regulation for the preservation of cultural properties in Thailand, which was promulgated in 1924.
In the late 1920s, Prince Damrong engaged in many important works: at the suggestion of Fernand Pila, a French Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary to Thailand, he published Buddhist Monuments in Siam, which is today considered to be the first Thai art history; he established the Royal Institute, the first comprehensive organization of cultural administration; he made legislative preparations for controlling exports of cultural properties; and he reformed Bangkok Museum. Also, he drafted the Act for the Establishment of Bangkok Museum, the first systematic law consisting of nineteen articles to govern and manage cultural properties. From 1929, curators of the museum such as Luang Boribanburiphan and Manit Wanlipodom started nation-wide archeological investigations under the direction of Prince Damrong. Even after Prince Damrong lost power in the Thai government as a result of the 1932 Revolution, the museum’s curators remained at the re-established Fine Arts Department, and continued to play central roles in the administration of archeological and cultural properties.
Smallholders are the major planters of the Para rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) in tropical Asia. One challenge they face is having to overcome the disadvantages of rubber processing and marketing; accordingly, organizing smallholders into cooperatives has been a major policy objective. The Thai government established smallholders’ cooperatives in the 1990s and granted them smokehouses for processing latex into ribbed smoked sheets (RSSs). More than two decades have passed since then; the cooperatives’ market share in the rubber processing/marketing industry has meanwhile declined to only 5% amid an accelerated growth in the private sector. This study aims to assess the impact of processing and marketing activities among Thailand’s rubber cooperatives, based on a case study in Chumphon province. It was discovered that the profit per unit area (rai) from rubber production was significantly higher for cooperative members than for non-members, which was primarily due to the higher prices of rubber offered by these cooperatives. This became possible because cooperatives produced higher-quality RSS than the private sector, which had to purchase unsmoked sheets (USSs) from a large number of rubber smallholders. Our regression analysis showed that cooperative membership ensured a higher profit per rai of 1,407 baht. It was also found that member households earned 50% higher total household income than non-members. In rubber production, the members depended more on hired labor, such as tappers, while allocating a major proportion of their family labor to other work opportunities, especially to non-rubber agricultural activities, which are more profitable considering the current low prices of rubber worldwide.
This study aims to reveal the current status of inter-religious marriage in India through analysis of the life histories of couples and interviews with voluntary organizations. Inter-religious marriage has hitherto been analyzed primarily from two points of view: the antagonism couples face in dealing with the social norms, especially vis-a-vis their families and relatives; and the opportunity inter-religious marriage affords couples to transform themselves and intimate others through their everyday interactions and relationships with the people around them. However, actors outside of family and relatives have not been taken into consideration as agents that mediate and collaborate in the process of their struggle. Such actors include voluntary organizations, which are treated in this article.
This paper first discusses the various problems that inter-religious couples have faced since the 1970s. It then describes the background that allowed them to marry and the process of antagonization, negotiation, and collaboration, focusing on the interaction and relationships between the inter-religious couples and various actors who protect and support them. Finally, it reveals that although inter-religious marriage involves various problems in everyday life, such as family strife and isolation, couples have attempted to manage the situation by continuing to negotiate with the actors around them. Voluntary organizations play a key role in this process of negotiation and construction of new social relationships by mediating between the couples and other social actors.