Chiang Rai province is part of the so-called Lan Na region (the upper northern part of Thailand which includes Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Lampang, Lamphun, Phayao, Phrae and Nan provinces). Lan Na used to be an independent kingdom until 1899, when it was annexed to Thailand. It had its own globalization periods, which were parallel to those of Thailand.
Thai Culture is another key concept in this study. The dynamic interaction of the socio-economic context with patriarchy (and female subordination) and the patriarchal Buddhist worldview amidst phases of historical globalization processes has resulted in cultural change. The understanding of Thai sexuality as a cultural product informs the HIV/AIDS studies. The Buddhist worldview as another cultural product is responsible for the local interpretation of the global HIV/AIDS concept rooted in a Protestant worldview.
To further illustrate Table 2, HIV/AIDS prevention concepts and policies from the elites of global organizations (such as the UN agencies) are being transferred to the Thai government as local elites in the world system. The ABC program and the strengthening of Buddhist leadership in shaping moral values and adhering to the Buddhist Five Precepts and HIV/AIDS prevention in a community-based approach promoted by UNDP and UNICEF are being transferred to the Sangha (the Thai Buddhist body) through the Sangha Metta Project in Chiang Mai and the Monks against AIDS network in Chiang Rai. At the same time safer sex concepts, condom promotion and biomedical interventions are being transferred from UN agencies to the Thai government through the Ministry of Public Health. The Thai government supervises the Sangha via the office of National Buddhism (2010). How the Thai government has exercised control over the Sangha during the globalization period is explained in Chapter 3.
The Protestant institutions that collaborate under the Ecumenical Advocacy alliances such as Presbyterian USA, the World Council of Churches (WCC), the World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC), DanChurchAid, the Christian Conference of Asia (CCA), etc. (Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance 2010) also transfer messages on life-skills education (including sex education), Protestant morality and HIV/AIDS holistic preventive approach.
The line of localization can be divided into:
1) The localization of messages from the Sangha level and the flow of the messages to the Monks against AIDS network in Chiang Rai which influences the localization of the messages and practices as transmitted by the abbot of the Tonnam Buddhist Temple. Finally the messages are transferred to the Tonnam Buddhist villagers.
2) The localization of messages from the Church of Christ in Thailand and the flow of the messages to the Christian AIDS Ministry in Chiang Mai which influences the localization of the messages as transmitted by the pastor of Lamthan Christ Church in Chiang Rai. Finally the messages are transferred to the Lamthan Protestant villagers.
The text which preceded this passage is available at:
HIV/AIDS as a Manifestation of Unequal Development