Demolishing the courthouse in the Supreme Court compound would mean more than just the loss of an old building; from a historian's perspective, the act would be tantamount to erasing a part of modern Thai history.
Chatri Prakitnonthakarn, a lecturer at Silpakorn University's Faculty of Architecture and an expert on the art of the post-1932 People's Party era, insists that it is vital to preserve this structure for its symbolic value: it was built to mark the country's regaining full judicial sovereignty in the 1930s after the abolition of extraterritorial legal rights for foreign nationals. Chatri will be speaking at a forum entitled "Tearing Down the Courthouse, Erasing Thai History" which will be held tomorrow, starting at 1.30pm, in Room 301 at Thammasat University's Faculty of Liberal Arts (Tha Prachan campus).
Also attending the forum, which is being jointly organised by the Foundation for the Promotion of Social Science and Humanities Textbooks Project and the Southeast Asia Studies Project, will be leading historian Thanet Apornsuwan and Pongkwan Lassus from the Association of Siamese Architects.
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