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Bones Around My NeckThe Life and Exile of a Prince Provocateur$
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Tamara Loos

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501704635

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501704635.001.0001

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Staging Secrets

Staging Secrets

Prince Prisdang Avenges History

(p.1) 1 Staging Secrets
Bones Around My Neck

Tamara Loos

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines the context wherein Prince Prisdang Chumsai (1852–1935) had thrived and was ultimately exiled from. It also discusses Prince Prisdang's “silence”—in particular the reason, which he had pointedly removed from his autobiography, for his falling out of favor with Siam and its favorite monarch, King Chulalongkorn (r. 1868–1910). In addition, the chapter also explores the relative silence on Prince Prisdang's life and contributions to history in general, as he has only received marginal attention from historians despite his achievements, and despite his own efforts to demonstrate his own historicity by publishing his autobiography. Though turning to Buddhism in his later years, Prisdang did not write about his life as a series of mistakes from which he learned clear-cut Buddhist lessons. Instead, he wrote about what he did for Siam that changed its history and why he should be, but has not been, acknowledged for it.

Keywords:   Prisdang Chumsai, Chulalongkorn, Siam, Buddhism, autobiography, historicity, silence, Europe, imperialism

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