Honors Projects

Title

Enlightenment in Education: Buddhist Influences of Kindness in Thai Education

Abstract

In Thailand, 94% of the population is Buddhist. While there is not an official state religion, the king is required by constitution to be Buddhist and encourage religion among the citizens. The dominance of Buddhism in Thailand has an effect on many parts of the country, especially the education system. On a 14-day study abroad trip, I took footage and conducted interviews in Thailand in an attempt to understand the differences in their education system and the education system in the United States, discovering that many of the differences revolved around the large influences of religion in Thailand. These religious influences and their encouragement of kindness among students and educators are presented in my documentary, as well as several examples of how Buddhism if very integrated into public life in Thailand. Additionally, the political protests and prior religious demonstrations in Thailand are discussed in their relation to the dominance of Buddhism, as well as their connection to the Buddhist king. The documentary explores communities and relationships that formed in the education system and their relation to the overall dominance of Buddhism in Thailand.

Publication Date

Fall 12-16-2014

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