Year published :May 2010

Pages :196 (x+186) pp.

Size :14x21 cm.

Black & White illustrations :13

ISBN: 9789749511923

Mapping Thai Muslims: Community Dynamics and Change on the Andaman Coast

by Wanni W. Anderson

This longitudinal, anthropological study challenges the single, dominant narrative of Muslim discourse in Thailand. It focuses on Thai Muslims in the Nipa Island (pseud.) community on the Andaman coast, whose economic and education aspirations, social relationships, and ethnic identity have been significantly altered through globalization and the religio-political unrest on the southeastern coast of Thailand. Nipa islanders seek to define themselves on their own terms as both Thai and Muslim. Their Muslim identity is uniquely interwoven with the particularities of time, locality, and specific ethnocultural history that links them to the Andaman coast.

Mapping Thai Muslims also traces Muslim socioreligious changes from two centuries ago to the 1980s, and through to the present. The ongoing redrawing of Islamic religiosity allows unique insight into Nipa islanders as local actors and agents with their own individual viewpoints and consequent life decisions.

Based as it is on extensive fieldwork, this study will be of great appeal to anthropologists, historians, Southeast Asian and Asian scholars, and readers interested in Islam and Muslim identity.

What others are saying

"Anderson’s complete familiarity with the subject, keen anthropological eye, acute power of observation and analysis, and almost story-like narrative style make her book both authoritative and thoroughly stimulating".—Omar Farouk Bajunid, Hiroshima City University

    About the Author

    Wanni W. Anderson is Professor of Research in the Department of Anthropology at Brown University. Her areas of teaching and research include ethnicity, cultural change, ethnonationalism, and autoethnography. Her most recent publications include Displacements and Diasporas: Asians in the Americas (2005) and In Two Worlds: Thai-American Trajectory (2009). She has received numerous research awards including the prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF), and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).


    • A three-generation ethnography of a Thai Muslim community
    • Provides unique historical background of the Andaman coast Muslims
    • Examines how Nipa (pseud.) islanders’ Muslim identity is defined, preserved, and communicated
    • Explores Nipa islanders’ reactions to Muslim unrest on the southeastern coast


      Muslims | Thailand | Thai Muslims | Andaman Coast | ethnic identity | social change

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