Suchart Sawatsi: Thailandâ€™s First Man of Letters
Despite a small output of fictional works, Suchart Sawatsi is, without doubt, the single most influential figure in the contemporary Thai literary world. For nearly four decades he has campaigned tirelessly, through magazine articles, newspaper columns, edited books, and public lectures and seminars, to create awareness among the Thai public of the countryâ€™s small but vibrant modern literary culture. The monthly literary magazine Lok Nangsuâ€™ (Book World, 1977-83) and the quarterly short story magazine, Choâ€™ Karaket (Screwpine Bouquet, 1978-99) are particularly important legacies of his energy and vision; the former, because it introduced a generation of readers to unfamiliar writers from both Thailand and beyond, and the latter because it launched the careers of many of todayâ€™s better-known writers. His best known creative writing is a collection of short stories first published in 1972 under the title, Khwam Ngiap (Silence).
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