University of Wisconsin–Madison

Friday Forum: Ian Baird

“The Hmong and the Communist Party of Thailand: A Transnational, Transcultural and Gender Relations-Transforming Experience”

Ian Baird, Associate Professor
Department of Geography, UW-Madison

September 8, 2017
NOON-1:30 P.M.


In the 1960s, a large proportion of the Hmong people living in the mountains of northern Thailand joined the Communist Party of Thailand (CPT) due to various injustices and abuses. The Hmong became an important group within the CPT. However, by the early 1980s most Hmong and non-Hmong in the CPT had given up and taken advantage of the amnesty offered by the government in 1980 and 1982. Here I generally explain the history of Hmong involvement with the CPT, but I specifically focus on demonstrating how Hmong experiences associated with the CPT were not simply isolating with the Hmong living “in the forest” with others who joined the CPT, but were actually transnational, transcultural and gender relations-transforming.