Perception of the Youth Movement Toward an Equal Society: A Case Study of Thailand

Wednesday, 13 July 2016: 09:36
Location: Hörsaal II (Neues Institutsgebäude (NIG))
Oral Presentation
Surangrut JUMNIANPOL, Chulalongkorn University Social Research Institute, Thailand
In Thailand, the social inequality was defined as one of causes of political conflicts and polarization, therefore, by the older generation movement, the national reform program which highlights on promoting social equality has been developed as a way to reconcile the divided society. However, Thailand in next twenty years will be in the hands of younger generation, especially the youth who are in the social movement. Nowadays, there are many active youth movements in Thailand, for instance, Dao Din [star of earth] Group, New Democracy Group  and Children of the Villagers Group at the Burapha University;  therefore, it  is worth to understand what the social equality they want and how they will create it. The paper aims to illustrate the perception of the youth who are in the movements toward social equality, environmental movements, democratic movements and alternative development movements. There are two main research questions: (1) what do they think about the social inequality in the context of divided Thailand? and (2) in their views, what are the major challenges in moving toward the equal society and how could they overcome it?  By interviewing the key informants who are the younger in selected movement, the paper outlined the discourse and discursive practices of youth movements about complexity of social equality. Finally, by comparing with the idea of social equality of the older movements as identified in national reform agenda, the paper also analyzed what were the gap and overlap idea of social equality among the youth and prior movements and how to accommodate it.