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A History of Ayutthaya
Siam in the Early Modern World

£74.99

  • Date Published: May 2017
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107190764

£ 74.99
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About the Authors
  • Early European visitors placed Ayutthaya alongside China and India as the great powers of Asia. Yet in 1767 the city was destroyed and its history has been neglected. This book is the first study of Ayutthaya from its emergence in the thirteenth century until its fall. It offers a wide-ranging view of social, political, and cultural history with focus on commerce, kingship, Buddhism, and war. By drawing on a wide range of sources including chronicles, accounts by Europeans, Chinese, Persians, and Japanese, law, literature, art, landscape, and language, the book presents early Siam as a 'commercial' society, not the peasant society usually assumed. Baker and Phongpaichit attribute the fall of the city not to internal conflict or dynastic decline but failure to manage the social and political consequences of prosperity. This book is essential reading for all those interested in the history of Southeast Asia and the early modern world.

    • The first full-length study of an Asian power that early Europeans placed alongside China and India
    • Draws on a wide range of sources, not only the chronicles and the European, Chinese, and Persian accounts, but also law, poetry, art, landscape, and language
    • An accessible and engaging approach from two leading historians of Southeast Asia
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Cast out for more than two hundred years as a failure of the aristocratic conceit and overlooked by modern historians, Ayutthaya comes alive again by these two superb scholars and writers. The book is full of original scholarship on the four centuries of dynamic Ayutthaya as a trans-Asian entrepot with enormous land-based resources, an imperial power with complex but fragile political infrastructure, and an open society with rich and creative culture that made Siam distinctive as a country. With thorough research and examination, and exquisite articulation, the book will not be surpassed for years, perhaps decades to come.' Thongchai Winichakul, Emeritus Professor of Southeast Asian History, University of Wisconsin, Madison

    'Scholars of Southeast Asia have waited a long time for a detailed study of the great Thai kingdom of Ayutthaya, but A History of Ayutthaya will exceed all their expectations. The authors have demonstrated a masterly knowledge of the historical sources, and have given us a readable, insightful and scholarly analysis. Setting a new benchmark for studies of premodern Thai history, this outstanding book will enrich our understanding of the dynamics of early modern states in Asia more generally and of the global interactions that characterize the period in which Ayutthaya flourished.' Barbara Watson Andaya, University of Hawaii 

    'This book is a well-researched and long-awaited comprehensive history of the most important ancient Siamese kingdom: Ayutthaya, the forerunner of modern Thailand. It will remain the standard history for anyone wishing to understand pre-modern Thailand and Southeast Asia.' Charnvit Kasetsiri, Thammasat University, Bangkok

    'Pasuk and Baker's extraordinarily comprehensive history of Ayutthaya offers an essential re-vision of that kingdom's past. It centers Ayutthaya within a vibrant early modern Asia, revealing the dynamic interaction among domestic, regional and transnational politics, culture, trade, and religion.' Tamara Loos, Cornell University

    'A remarkable work of scholarship. A History of Ayutthaya will help restore this former Thai kingdom to its rightful place as one of the pivotal countries of early modern Asia.' Patrick Jory, University of Queensland

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2017
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107190764
    • length: 342 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 158 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.67kg
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    List of maps
    List of illustrations
    Preface: Ayutthaya in history
    1. Before Ayutthaya
    2. Ayutthaya rising
    3. An age of warfare
    4. Peace and commerce
    5. An urban and commercial society
    6. Ayutthaya falling
    7. To Bangkok
    Appendix: lists of kings
    Glossary
    Notes on some major sources
    References
    Index.

  • Authors

    Chris Baker
    Chris Baker is an independent scholar. Together, with Pasuk Phongpaichit, he has written eight books and over thirty articles on Thailand's history, literature, and political economy; has translated key historical sources, pioneering works by Thai historians, and literary classics, including the epic poem The Tale of Khun Chang Khun Phaen (2010) which won the 2013 Becker Translation Prize from the Association for Asian Studies; and has held visiting posts at universities in the USA, Japan, and Australia.

    Pasuk Phongpaichit, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand
    Pasuk Phongpaichit is Professor of Economics at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok. Together, with Chris Baker, she has written eight books and over thirty articles on Thailand's history, literature, and political economy; has translated key historical sources, pioneering works by Thai historians, and literary classics, including the epic poem The Tale of Khun Chang Khun Phaen (2010) which won the 2013 Becker Translation Prize from the Association for Asian Studies; and has held visiting posts at universities in the USA, Japan, and Australia.

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