Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Revisiting the Thai National Library in Bangkok

After almost 40 years, since the time I was ordered to go to the Thailand National Library near the Wasukri pier by one of my late high school teachers (at Suankularb), I just had free time for a visit to the same building again, this time as a grey-hair man. My old memory came back.

This time, I spent around 2 hours looking around various old reading rooms, and browse books on the shelves. It has not changed. (New building behind is just barely occupied so I did not visit.) The number of books are just marginal, although sufficient for casual browsing. No wonder I spent almost my 40 years somewhere elses, at my former universities' libraries as well as my own home library. Nevertheless, I 'll be back, for there are a number of books that I don't have in my home collection.

Back at home, I just found a copy of Thai article on the web, written for Matichon newspaper which reflect the sad situation of the Thai National Libraries. I hope the link below to the article in my blog will echo further this plight of Thai scholars with regard to the limitation of resources for the public a bit more. We talk about its holding size here. And I do not even start discussing digitization of its holding yet.

State of the Thai National Library (published in 2010)

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