Updated: Les Mis / Lese Maj

9 02 2013

PPT has been watching the social media reaction to the film “Les Miserables.” After all, the movie has the military shooting and killing lots of poor people in red shirts rebelling against a ruling elite and singing a rousing “Do you hear the people sing.” And its heritage is in Victor Hugo, a dedicated republican whose novel is about the unsuccessful, Parisian republican uprising in 1832.Les Mis

Kong Rithdee at the Bangkok Post has a useful take on the movie. He points out that “a romantic vision of popular revolt for the poor and the disenfranchised, and that sentiment has been taken up by some audiences halfway across the Earth.” He adds that “Do you hear the people sing”:

… has been translated into Thai by the guys called Art Bact’ & Ardisto, and the sound clip has gone viral in the past week. The Thai verses impressively retain the meaning of the English original, and also its romantic spirit (it could tip over into naivete) that seems to fire up most revolutionaries, or those who dream the dream of one day becoming revolutionaries.

Interestingly Kong says that an “activist photo-shopper has made a face-match putting Jean Valjean … next to that of the jailed editor Somyot Prueksakasemsuk.”

Ultra-royalists may feel the need to protest the film and protest its explicit anti-monarchism.

Update: Here’s the Thai version of the song/anthem mentioned by Kong, preceded by an English version.


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12 02 2013
Hearing the people sing (and seeing them dance) « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Readers might find this demonstration against lese majeste incarceration and for freedom of interest. It was on 10 February near the Democracy Monument, and links to our earlier post on Les Mis/Lese Maj: […]

12 02 2013
Hearing the people sing (and seeing them dance) « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] Readers might find this demonstration against lese majeste incarceration and for freedom of interest. It was on 10 February near the Democracy Monument, and links to our earlier post on Les Mis/Lese Maj: […]




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