Thailand by yaofenji

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									 Thailand
Memory Project 2010
 Virtual Field Trip
Thailand (pronounced ˈtaɪlənd/; Thai: is an
independent country that lies in the heart of
Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by
Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and
Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand
and Malaysia, and to the west by the Andaman
Sea and the southern extremity of Burma.
Phuket
The largest city in Thailand is Bangkok,
the capital, which is also the country's
center of political, commercial,
industrial and cultural activities.
Thailand is the world's 50th largest
country in terms of total area (slightly
smaller than Yemen and slightly larger
than Spain), with a surface area of
approximately 198,000 sq mi, and the
21st most-populous country, with
approximately 64 million people.
About 75% of the population is
ethnically Thai, 14% is of Chinese
origin, and 3% is ethnically Malay;[6]
the rest belong to minority groups
including Mons, Khmers and various
hill tribes.
The country is a kingdom, a
constitutional monarchy
with King Bhumibol
Adulyadej, the ninth king
of the House of Chakri,
who has reigned since
1946, making him the
world's longest-serving
current head of state and
the longest-reigning Thai
monarch in Thai history.
The king is officially titled
as the Head of State, the       The Grand Palace
Head of the Armed Forces,       in Bangkok built in 1782,
an Upholder of the              is the official residence
Buddhist religion, and the      of the King of Thailand.
Defender of all Faiths.
Thailand is one of the
most devoutly
Buddhist countries in
the world. The national
religion is Theravada Buddhism
which is practiced by more than
94.7% of all Thais. Muslims make
up 4.6% of the population and
0.7% belong to other religions.
Culture and traditions in Thailand
are significantly influenced by
India, as are Burma, Laos and
Cambodia. Thailand experienced
rapid economic growth between
1985 and 1995 and is a newly
industrialized country with tourism,
due to world-class tourist
destinations such as Pattaya,
Bangkok, and Phuket, and
exports contributing significantly to
the economy.
Thailand is the
world’s no.1
exporter of rice,
exporting more
than 6.5 million
tons of milled rice
annually. Rice is the
most important crop in the
country. Thailand has the
highest percentage of
arable land, 27.25%, of any
nation in the Greater
Mekong sub-region. About
55% of the available land
area is used for rice
production.
The culture of Thailand incorporates a great deal
of influence from India, China, Cambodia, and
the rest of Southeast Asia. Thailand's national
religion Theravada Buddhism is central to
modern Thai identity and belief. In practice, Thai
Buddhism has evolved over time to include many
regional beliefs originating from Hinduism,
animism as well as ancestor worship. The official
calendar in Thailand is based on the Eastern
version of the Buddhist Era, which is 543 years
ahead of the Gregorian (western) calendar. For
example, the year AD 2010 is 2553 BE in
Thailand.
Thai cuisine blends
five fundamental
tastes: sweet, spicy,
sour, bitter and salty.
Some common
ingredients used in
Thai cuisine include
garlic, chillies, lime
juice, lemon grass, and
fish sauce. The staple
food in Thailand is rice,
particularly jasmine
variety rice (also
known as Hom Mali
rice) which is included
in almost every meal.
Education is valued in Thailand and mandated through the
ninth grade, but free through grade twelve.
Chulalongkorn University, established in 1917 is
the oldest university in Thailand.
Like most Asian cultures, respect towards ancestors is
an essential part of Thai spiritual practice. Thais have a
strong sense of hospitality and generosity, but also a
strong sense of social hierarchy. Seniority is an
important concept in Thai culture. Elders have by
tradition ruled in family decisions or ceremonies.
Older siblings have duties to younger ones. Taboos in
Thailand include touching someone's head or pointing
with the feet, as the head is considered the most
sacred and the foot the dirtiest part of the body.
Stepping over someone, or over food, is considered
insulting. Books and other documents are the most
revered of secular objects. One should not slide a
book across a table or place it on the floor.
What do these two images have in common?
  The traditional Thai greeting, the

                      wai
is generally offered first by the younger of the two people
meeting, with their hands pressed together, fingertips
pointing upwards as the head is bowed to touch their face
to the hands, usually coinciding with the spoken word
"Sawasdee khrap" for male speakers, and "Sawasdee ka" for
females. The elder then is to respond afterwards in the
same way. When children leave to go to school, they are
taught to wai to their parents to represent their respect for
them. They do the same when they come back. The wai is a
sign of respect and reverence for another, similar to the
namaste greeting of India and Nepal.
Thai visual art was traditionally primarily Buddhist. Thai Buddha
images from different periods have a number of distinctive styles.
Contemporary Thai art often combines traditional Thai elements with
modern techniques.
An example of pottery discovered near Ban
Chiang in Udon Thani province, the earliest
dating to 2100 BCE
There is no tradition of spoken drama in Thailand,
the role instead being filled by Thai dance.
Tsunami in Phuket, 2004

								
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