Columnnist

Thana Boonlert

Bangkok Post columnist

Thana Boonlert is a writer for the Life section and a Bangkok Post columnist.

Thana Boonlert
21 Nov 2022

When art gets stifled

'Art is short, a case is long," read a banner. Students apparently hijacked the well-known motto "art is long, life is short" by Prof Silpa Bhirasri, the father of Thai modern art, in protest of Chiang Mai University's legal action against its own lecturers and a student who "trespassed" on the art centre to exhibit works, some of which might challenge those in power, last year. It is a case in point for stifling democracy in Thai art.

21 Nov 2022 1
When art gets stifled
4 Nov 2022

Nationalism is not the answer to land woes

Resistance to the controversial foreign land ownership bill is giving rise to the term khai chat -- used to denounce traitors who sell the motherland -- being used in political discourse. Whether a person is a government critic or supporter, he or she believes their ancestors fought very hard to protect our land and it should not be given away to foreigners.

4 Nov 2022 35
Nationalism is not the answer to land woes
3 Oct 2022

Rethinking citizenship

What do you think when someone says those who are not loyal to the monarchy hate the nation?

3 Oct 2022 5
2 Sep 2022

The rebranding of 'big brother' Gen Prawit

A day after Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha was suspended from his prime ministerial duties, Paiboon Nititawan, deputy leader of the ruling Palang Pracharath Party, was handing out a biography on Gen Prawit Wongsuwon, now acting PM, to reporters.

2 Sep 2022 27
15 Aug 2022

Time is on our side

Win or lose, a protest is a process of trial and error. To put it simply, it is disruption, innovation, or something in between, just the way the now-defunct but shape-shifting Future Forward Party was in 2019 because it is born out of a spirit, not a person or a party. If the student-led demonstration goes down in history for demanding the boldest political reform, including the role of the monarchy, its resurrection last week proves that the pro-democracy movement is coming of age.

15 Aug 2022 2
6 Aug 2022

Thailand's Big Brother is upping the ante

In the late 18th century, British philosopher Jeremy Bentham visited his younger brother, Samuel, in Russia, who arranged unskilled factory workers in a circle so that he could supervise them. Inspired by this principle, Bentham developed "the panopticon", an inspection tower surrounded by cells. Its uniqueness was that it enabled a watchman to monitor prisoners without them knowing they were being watched.

6 Aug 2022 7
Thailand's Big Brother is upping the ante
1 Jul 2022

Farewells teach us all to live for the moment

When we bid farewell to something, it marks the end of a relationship. Saying it gives us a sense of ending. Saying goodbye reminds us of how vulnerable and uncertain our life is.

1 Jul 2022 2
Farewells teach us all to live for the moment
27 Jun 2022

Riding the green wave

Only two weeks after decriminalising cannabis, Thailand is experiencing a green rush. Since June 9, when the legalisation of marijuana for home and commercial use took effect, almost 1 million people registered to grow it with food and drug officials, while more than 40 million have checked out the registration platform. There's a growing public interest in the cash crop -- though some farmers remain doubtful -- and it is paving the way for "cannabis journalism".

27 Jun 2022
3 Jun 2022

Weaponising Thainess with numbers

The feud over an online campaign calling for Thai numerals to be scrapped in official documents isn't just about pragmatism -- it is a clash between the two ideologies which underpin Thai society.

3 Jun 2022 39
6 May 2022

Gig workers need unions to secure living

On May Day last week, hundreds of demonstrators marched from Ratchaprasong intersection to the Bangkok Arts and Culture Centre (BACC) to push for improvements to labour rights. People from all walks of life took part in the rally, held by the Workers' Union. Among them were delivery riders with their precarious employment status.

6 May 2022 6