Battles of Thai Democracy in the 1970s

(This is a brief history of Thai politics during the 1970s. It is largely drawn from the book: History of Thailand by Chris Baker and Pasuk Phongpaichit. I am reading it in order to gain an understanding of what is occurring there today and am sharing the information I get from those books – as well as my interpretation – here. More posts on this topic may follow.)

For Thailand the 1970s saw the collapse of military dictatorship followed by a period of parliamentary rule dominated by urban business interests and then a bloody return to military dominated rule. These events go someway towards contextualising the current conflict in that nations capital, Bangkok.
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Art is Theft

Andy Warhol collectors are currently up in arms about the dramatic loss in value some works attributed to him are suffering. One work from the Red Series made the dramatic descent from $2 million to nothing. The cause of the decrease was the stamping of ‘denied’ in bright red on the back of the canvas.

That stamp was a costly little addition given by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts as part of its authentication efforts. What, above all, has got people up in arms about that stamp is that the actual process of determination is entirely secret and appears arbitrary. That 1 in 5 of works attributed to Warhol are knocked back amplifies the significance of the issue. The ramifications, however, run much deeper than the trade-able value of certain works by a certain artist, the situation highlights a general arbitrariness in the determination of art as art.

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