Unfortunately, I was unable to examine the original or to find its publisher. Suphanni asserts incorrectly that Khwam mai phayabat appeared soon after Khwam phayabat. Suphanni also believes that Nang neramid was a translated novel published around during the reign of Rama 5 sic. I suspect that Suphanni was unable to read Nang neramid because if she had she would have known that Nang neramid was not a translation. Refer to Suphanni, Prawat kanpraphan , pp.
Love, Duty, and Marriage in a Classic Thai Novel
Khru Liam's contemporaries who wrote in his cremation volume admitted to having read Khwam mai phayabat but no one was able to give much detail. The only evidence of the plot was revealed by Bunchuay Somphong who said that the novel is based on the Buddhist notion of forgiveness which allowed the wronged husband to win back his adulterous wife.
The postscript was dated 29 July Khwam mai phayabat was completed on 4 Aug.
It should be noted that I use the anachronistic word Negro to describe Africans in an attempt to maintain integrity of the text. The designation was used in Nang neramid. Ayesha — a white woman who rules over a tribe of Africans — has achieved immortality after immersing herself in a sacred fire.
In a fit of rage, she kills her lover, a handsome Egyptian high priest.
A Thai novel
She soon regrets her action and preserves her lover's dead body for 2, years, spending nights beside him. She hopes to be able to revive him one day. Leo is a splitting image of Ayesha's lover because Leo is a direct descendant of the Egyptian priest. Ayesha tries to convince Leo to step into the fire of eternity with her.
But when she enters the fire, she turns into an old woman and dies.
Although the novel is a romance, pure and simple, it provided the reader with a wealth of information about Africa — its people, its climate, its culture, its geography, and its plant and animal life. The novel is a vivid portrayal of this alluring and exotic place. Would simultaneous literacy of European novels across different Asian cultures and communities conjure up uniform or dissimilar images of the west? How different is each translation intra-culturally and inter-culturally? How does colonial status complicate translation? Phillips said that he owed his ideas to Malinowski, which has never been applied to the study of literature.
The pitfalls of mimicry and imitation are not new to the Thai. He wrote that for the Thai to appear European was comparable to a dog learning to sit. The human owner may think that the dog was cute because it exhibited human qualities, but it was still a dog. Similarly, a Thai who emulated the Englishman may gain the empathy of the English but that only emphasised the superiority of Europeans. King Vajiravudh urged the Thai to appropriate only what was needed to modernise Siam and not to try to become an Englishman.
I am indebted to Craig J. Reynolds for suggesting this reference. The book The Ambiguous allure of the west , with articles based on the conference papers, is forthcoming from Cornell Southeast Asia Program Publications Jerome Publishing , , p. Galang's A Child of sorrow , appeared in By , production of Filipino English novels had exceeded those written in India, Singapore, and Malaya.
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Anglicised novels were not exclusively consumed by the indigenous, but they were more-or-less open to the world, very much in the tradition of Jose Rizal's Noli me tangere , and El filibusterismo which were written in Spanish for fellow Filipino intellectuals but were also accessible to the Spanish authorities.
It should also be noted that vernacular novels in Tagalog appeared soon after the defeat of Spain by the United States. These novels were written by journalists and typesetters who combined local literary forms with the novel introduced by Rizal. Resil Mojares believes that the defeat of a repressive colonial Spanish regime freed the Tagalog mentally to allow them to write novels in the vernacular.
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However, those novels found limited circulation because Tagalog was a language limited to speakers around Manila. It is more recently that Filipinos have embraced Tagalog as their national language. Mojares , Resil B. Correspondence in connection with this paper should be addressed to: tc17 cornell.
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