An Open Letter to CU Books & the Rector of Chulalongkorn University

February 15, 2007


15 February 2007

Dear Colleagues,

As you know, Freedom Against Censorship Thailand (FACT) is opposing a
broad range of censorship issues. Censorship is unbecoming of a
modern, democratic Thailand. Censorship stifles free speech, free
expression, academic freedom and tramples basic human rights and

It has come to our attention that CU Books and Chula Bookcentre is
refusing to distribute and sell two new books on the basis that they
are perceived to be critical of Thailand’s military coup government.
The first book, The September 19 Coup: A Coup for a Democratic Regime
Under the Constitutional Monarchy, in Thai, is an anthology to which
numerous respected academic voices have contributed. The book’s
authors include Ajarns Nidhi Eoseewong, Sulak Sivaraksa, Chaiwat
Satha-anand, Tongchai Winichakul, Suthachai Yimprasert, Pakavadi
Virapaspong, Thanet Wongyannava, Somsak Jeamtheerasakul, Kasem
Penpinan, Somchai Preechaz-silpakul, and Sirote Klampaiboon. Surely
such respected academic opinions deserve consideration at such an
august institution as Chulalongkorn University.

More recently, CU Books and Chula Bookcentre are reneging on their
agreement to distribute and sell yet another book critical of
Thailand’s military coup. The book, A Coup for the Rich, in English,
is the work of Chulalongkorn University professor, Giles Ji
Ungphakorn. Many of the articles in the book have been previously
published or have been the subject of lectures.

If Chulalongkorn University will not even give a voice for one of its
own respected professors to be heard, then academic freedom simply
does not exist in Thailand.

These two books are not banned books. Neither has been officially
listed in the Royal Gazette as banned.

They are the subject of self-censorship in Thailand. No academic body
has the right to censor such academic work, regardless of the opinions

Self-censorship is the most insidious sort of censorship because we do
it to ourselves. Whom of us has the right to make a decision to
stifle free expression?

We find it reprehensible that any government or any bookstore,
particularly those in an academic setting, should impose such

Freedom Against Censorship Thailand (FACT) demands these two books be
sold openly NOW!



Contact details:
CJ Hinke <> Tel. 0-879-761-880 (English)
Supinya Klangnarong <> โทร 0-867-889-322 (ภาษาไทย)

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