Brownbag Lunch: Red Shirts, Yellow Shirts, and the Future of Thailand
Live Video Webcast
12:00 to 1:30 pm PT
See below for details
Please join us for a rare opportunity to meet with renowned Thai politics and society expert William Klausner.
The streets of Bangkok have calmed since May, but the underlying tensions that gave rise this spring to the worst political violence Thailand has seen in decades remain unchanged. Some 88 were killed and more than 1800 wounded during the protests and crackdown. But while the streets have been cleared, nothing has been resolved and the long-running battle for power between the so-called "Red Shirts" and "Yellow Shirts" continues.
This week, Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva survived a no-confidence motion in parliament but his hold on power remains shaky. He has yet to announce new election, one of the Red Shirts' key demands.
Most Red Shirts are urban and rural poor who have benefitted little from Thailand's rapid economic rise. Many come from the north and northeast of the country and support former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted by a military coup in 2006. Opposing the Red Shirts are the Yellow Shirts: middle-class royalists, businesspeople, and urban intellectuals who shut down parts of Thailand with their own protests two years ago.
William Klausner will address the roots of the conflict, today's shaky peace, and prospects for political reconciliation.
Klausner has worked over the past 50 years with US foundations, including the Asia Foundation and the Ford Foundation. A resident of Thailand for many decades, he has taught at law and anthropology at Thammasat and Chulalongkorn Universities and written numerous articles and books on Thai culture, society, and politics, particularly on the tensions between traditional hierarchical culture and liberal democracy and rapid social-economic change. Mr. Klausner holds a B.A., M.A. and a J.D. from Yale University. He is the author of books including: Reflections on Thai Culture and Thai Culture in Transition: Collected Writings of William J. Klausner.
Please note: this event will also be a free live video webcast on http://www.livestream.com/as_nocal from 12:00 to 1:30 pm PT.