Critical Connections: Forum on Cultural Studies in Asia and Beyond
16 March 2012, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand
CONFERENCE KEYNOTE SCHOLAR AND GUEST SPEAKER
Mr. Glen CHATELIER (Assumption University)
"A Literary response to the Morally Astute Life of H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej The Great, Thailand’s most beloved monarch"
H.M. Bhumibol Ajulyadej the Great, King of Thailand celebrated His 84th Birthday on December 5, 2011. Apart from the historic distinction His Majesty has achieved in this joyous celebration, there was a far deeper implication culturally for Thailand – the Thais felicitated their Father, who to many is a God-King, and not without reason. His Majesty has lived for His people caring for them, consoling them and providing for them. His Majesty’s good deeds and philanthrophism for the Thais have been guided by two deep moral behaviors which He has displayed as King. The first is His Majesty’s pledge at His accession to the throne of Thailand in 1946: “We shall reign with justice and fairness over all the people of Thailand.” The second moral guiding force has been what is identified as “Tossapit Rajatham,” the King’s tenfold Moral Code. The paper using the framework of religio- cultural analyses will explore the impacts of Tossapit Rajatham in H.M.The King’s rule as elicited from poems written by the author, between 1996 and the present time. The aim of the paper is show the operant value of moral righteousness as advocated by His Majesty through what He in the 1970’s proposed to be Good Governance. On the other hand, the Thai culture is ideally served through the example of His Majesty’s life and work and educators in Thailand must take cognizance of such enlightening influences such as His Majesty’s life and work which could further inspire students and the general populace alike.
|GLEN CHATELIER is currently Director of the Office of International Affairs at Assumption University. As a published poet in Thailand, he writes in the modified sonnet form and for the past 16 years has written in celebration of special anniversaries and birthdays for Their Majesties the King and Queen of Thailand. His sonnets addressed to His Majesty the King more recently have encapsulated the concept of Tossapit Rajatham and the Sufficiency Mindset which characterizes the Sufficiency Economy as set forth by H.M. The King.