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Thread: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

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    Forum's veteran Smiles's Avatar
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    Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    On another topic below our dearest Moderator and Orator made a mistake regarding the Thailand 'area' of Isaan ... i.e. he referred to Isaan as being a Thailand 'province'.
    An easy mistake to make and JellyBean almost immediately made it right ... i.e. that Isaan was an 'area' not a Province, and a very large area to boot. (Hell, as we all know Frequent is the only member of this board who has NEVER made a mistake.)


    Anyway, for all members to be able to quickly figure out which Province is which. herein attached are two excellent maps, the first map is of the entire Thailand and it's Provinces. The second map is of Isaan ~ and it's Provinces ~ only.


    thailand-provinces-map-max (1).jpg


    Provinces in Thailand are not static. New Provinces are often made by chopping up other Provinces, with growing populations usually being the criteria.

    For instance: Ubon Ratchathani Province had part of it's northern area taken away and a new Province created, Amnat Charoen.

    Same same for Nongkhai Province. It used to be a very long Province which sat happily on the Mekong River. That also got clipped and Bueng Kan Province appeared a few years ago.

    Udon Thani Province lost it's western territory and Nong Bua Lamphu Province was born.

    And so it goes ...

    I would not be surprised to see Nakhon Ratchsima Province (AKA 'Korat') lose some space in the next decade.



    isaan-map-.jpg

    Just another reason why I love living in Thailand


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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    I wonder if provinces matter to anyone except those for whom it is important. Ask your average Thai money boy where he comes from and the answer will be the name of the nearest large town - Sisaket, Surin etc., not their province. I usually follow their answer up with a statement like "Oh, Isaan" or "Oh, northern Thailand" and inevitably they reply "Yes, have you been?". They may know the name of their province but it doesn't figure in their conversation as much as their region does. That be somewhat different for southerners, who usually just answer with "South" (region) when you ask them where from, rather than, say, Songkhla (province) - although I did have one southern money boy follow up with the explanation "my cock is Moslem" (he was circumcised)

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    Forum's veteran Marsilius's Avatar
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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Smiles View Post
    On another topic below our dearest Moderator and Orator made a mistake regarding the Thailand 'area' of Isaan ... i.e. he referred to Isaan as being a Thailand 'province'.
    Rather than calling Isaan a "province" (which, as you have convincingly explained, it isn't) or an "area" (which merely stresses its geographical coherence), there is surely a better word yet - "region". Unless that word has, in the overall structure of Thai government and administration, a specific meaning that rules it out of consideration, I'd choose it because it goes beyond the anodyne "area" by correctly implying that there are various broad cultural (including linguistic and socio-economic) characteristics that the constituent provinces of Isaan (though diverse in many detailed matters) have in common.
    "The fruits of peace and tranquility... are the greatest goods... while those of its opposite, strife, are unbearable evils. Hence we ought to wish for peace, to seek it if we do not already have it, to conserve it once it is attained, and to repel with all our strength the strife which is opposed to it. To this end individual[s]... and in even greater degree groups and communities are obliged to help one another... from the bond or law of human society." [Marsilio dei Mainardini (c.1275-1342), Defensor Pacis]

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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Marsilius View Post
    Rather than calling Isaan a "province" (which, as you have convincingly explained, it isn't) or an "area" (which merely stresses its geographical coherence), there is surely a better word yet - "region". Unless that word has, in the overall structure of Thai government and administration, a specific meaning that rules it out of consideration, I'd choose it because it goes beyond the anodyne "area" by correctly implying that there are various broad cultural (including linguistic and socio-economic) characteristics that the constituent provinces of Isaan (though diverse in many detailed matters) have in common.
    Like this you mean -
    4egions-thailand-provinces-map-size2d-1080x675.jpg

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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    Yes - and no (see below!)...
    "The fruits of peace and tranquility... are the greatest goods... while those of its opposite, strife, are unbearable evils. Hence we ought to wish for peace, to seek it if we do not already have it, to conserve it once it is attained, and to repel with all our strength the strife which is opposed to it. To this end individual[s]... and in even greater degree groups and communities are obliged to help one another... from the bond or law of human society." [Marsilio dei Mainardini (c.1275-1342), Defensor Pacis]

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    Forum's veteran Marsilius's Avatar
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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    Quite so - although the caption says that these are "geographical" regions of Thailand, implying that they exhibit physical differences such as, I imagine, highland areas vs. lowland areas of the whole country.

    My point was that Isaan might be better defined as a "region" by the cultural/socio-economic/linguistic et. al. characteristics that distinguish it from other parts* of Thailand.

    *Notice how I've introduced yet another term there?
    "The fruits of peace and tranquility... are the greatest goods... while those of its opposite, strife, are unbearable evils. Hence we ought to wish for peace, to seek it if we do not already have it, to conserve it once it is attained, and to repel with all our strength the strife which is opposed to it. To this end individual[s]... and in even greater degree groups and communities are obliged to help one another... from the bond or law of human society." [Marsilio dei Mainardini (c.1275-1342), Defensor Pacis]

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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    The people of the North for example don't give a hoot about somtam, the sometimes fiery green papaya salad which is a staple of a typical Isaan meal.
    Apart from food, there are similarities between the people in the provinces along the banks of the Mekong River with their cousins in Laos, culture and language, come to mind.

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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    Quote Originally Posted by dinagam View Post
    The people of the North for example don't give a hoot about somtam, the sometimes fiery green papaya salad which is a staple of a typical Isaan meal. Apart from food, there are similarities between the people in the provinces along the banks of the Mekong River with their cousins in Laos, culture and language, come to mind.
    My recollection is reading somewhere that the 19th Century Thai governments invited in settlers from Laos and Cambodia to populate a very sparsely settled North East (now the Isaan region), hence the cultural and linguistic differences

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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    Quote Originally Posted by frequent View Post
    I wonder if provinces matter to anyone except those for whom it is important. Ask your average Thai money boy where he comes from and the answer will be the name of the nearest large town - Sisaket, Surin etc., not their province.
    Although I'm not sure how you could tell that they were referring to the nearest large town, as the examples given have the same name for both the capital town of the province and the name of the province itself. This is frequently the case.

    Anyway great maps Smiles, these should be kept as a useful resource.

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    Re: Maps of Thailand and Isaan ...

    The Esan map in the OP used five colors, while four would be enough.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_color_theorem
    Even worse, Nong Khai and Bueng Kan have the same color.

    All provinces have the same name as their capital (not necessarily the largest town, e.g. Songkhla / Hat Yai). When asking boys where they come from, I sometimes get the province name, sometimes the region of Thailand.

    In rare cases, I get a simplification. A boy from Ang Thong said he is from Ayutthaya, but when I asked for the district, he said he is not from Ayuatthaya but Ang Thong, but thought I wouldn't know where Ang Thong is and his home district borders on Ayutthaya. I have been around to so many places, I often ask for district as well. That weeds out foreign boys as well; I'm not good at recognizing accents, so a boy from Cambodia could pass as coming from Surin, but when I ask for his district, the truth will come out.

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