Autochthonous Politics and Capitalist Development in Thailand

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Autochthonous Politics and Capitalist Development in Thailand

Autochthonous politics is defined as indigenous-developed politics. Adherence to autochthonous politics allows for the gradual evolution of indigenous political regimes in the face of foreign alternatives. Autochthonous politics is said to exist when indigenous political systems are not displaced by foreign political systems over time. Successful autochthonous power systems often revolve around a central political figure like a monarch or a dictator who maintains a stranglehold over the entire regime through a network of loyal sycophants and supplicants. The monarch or dictator retains central control over political power through legal and extra-legal means. The clearest example from European history was Louis XV. The Sun King or le roi soleil, meant when he said “l’état cest moi” or “I am the state”. The singular repsentation of a political demi-god derives legitimacy from mysterious universal sources. In the case of Thailand, the powerful Siamese monarchs sat on their thrones above heaven, earth and all men. All beings paid homage to the great and absolute power of the autochthonous monarch. The summative power of the monarch was made all the more powerful because of the grand narratives that surround the mystery and spirituality of the King of Kings

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