Whilst browsing in Asia books in Bangkok looking for a Thai cook book I came across a shelf of books dedicated to the experience of ‘farangs’. Farang is the Thai word for a foreigner of ‘Western’ descent and is in common usage among both Thai’s and Westerners living in Thailand. The word is thought to originate from Indo-Persian term ‘farangi’, which was derived from Arabic (firinjīyah). Its meaning comes from the reference to ‘Franks’, a Germanic tribe who had vast imperial power across the region in the Middle Ages. Today it is used mostly to denote ethnically White migrants in Thailand, although some use it as a generic term meaning ‘foreigner’.
At first glance the majority of books on this shelf relate to the experiences of farang men, many are about their experiences of getting to know the place, the people and forming relationships. The two standout texts are by Dr Iain Corness, a regular contributor to the Pattaya Mail and resident in Thailand for a number of years. In the book he muses on a variety of topics from motoring and immigration to medicine, spirituality and death…all in good humour though. And both books are available on Amazon!
If anyone knows of other books published on this topic please send us a link!