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Tamara Loos

Professor of History and Asian Studies
T. Loos 2016

Tamara Loos is Professor of History and Asian Studies. She is currently writing a book called, "Bones around My Neck: The Life and Exile of a Prince Provocateur."The book offers a social history of nineteenth and early twentieth Siam (Thailand) through the eyes of a reluctantly rebellious prince, Prisdang Chumsai (1852-1935). His perspective on this crucial moment in Siam’s history—when that country, at once, escaped imperial control and transformed into an absolutist state—provides a damning critique of how political power and influence operated under Thai absolutism. Prisdang’s experience unveils the manipulation of power beneath the mask of public expressions of loyalty to the monarchy that continues to the present day. His drama offers more than a story about Siamese politics: it also casts in high relief the subjective experience of global imperialism. It is a personal and a political adventure of an unwitting provocateur who caused a commotion in every country he visited: from Siam, through Europe as Siam’s first foreign diplomat, to French Indochina, British Malaya, Ceylon, India, and then back to Siam. Her first book, "Subject Siam: Family, Law and Colonial Modernity in Thailand" considered Siam's place as a colonized and colonizing power, and centrally integrates both gender and the Malay Muslim south into Thai history.

Current Projects: "Bones around My Neck: The Life and Exile of a Prince Provocateur," Cornell University Press, 2016. Current research and teaching projects include: history of marriage in Siam, the politics and sexuality of French sex radical René Guyon in Asia, and the athleticism-asceticism connection extreme sports.

Key Networks: Association of Asian Studies, SEAP Cornell, Cornell University Press, Thammasat University, Kyoto University

Topics of Interest: History of Thailand, sexuality and gender, life writing, the role of emotions and narrative in history, and extreme sports.

(607) 254-5332