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Ghosts of the New City – Spirits, Urbanity, and the Ruins of Progress in Chiang Mai - Hawaii Scholarship Online
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Ghosts of the New City: Spirits, Urbanity, and the Ruins of Progress in Chiang Mai

Andrew Alan Johnson


Chiang Mai (literally, “new city”) suffered badly in the 1997 Asian financial crisis as the Northern Thai real estate bubble collapsed along with the Thai baht, crushing dreams of a renaissance of Northern prosperity. Years later, the architectural ruins of the excesses of the 1990s still stain the skyline, signs of a trauma, brought back vividly by the political crisis of 2006, that haunts efforts to remake the city. For many Chiang Mai residents, new developments harbor the seeds of the crash, manifest in anxious stories of ghosts and criminals who conceal themselves behind the city’s progre ... More

Keywords: urbanity, Thailand, progress, theater state, ghosts, animism, Buddhism, space, sacrality, architecture

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2014 Print ISBN-13: 9780824839390
Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016 DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824839390.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Andrew Alan Johnson, author
Yale-NUS College