Professor Duncan McCargo
Professor of Southeast Asian Politics
I'm best known for my agenda-setting contributions to current debates on the politics of Thailand. Fluent in Thai, fascinated by Asia, I've spent several years in Thailand, most recently in war-torn Pattani.
I've also lived in Singapore, taught in Belfast, Cambodia and Japan, and published on Indonesia and Vietnam. As I hate repeating myself, I change research topics regularly. I am committed to doing serious fieldwork. Time magazine wrote of my work 'No armchairs for this author… McCargo is the real McCoy.'
My ESRC-funded ninth book, Tearing Apart the Land: Islam and Legitimacy in Southern Thailand (Cornell University Press 2008) won the Asia Society's inaugural Bernard Schwartz Book Prize for 2009, worth $20,000. Jury co-chair Professor Carol Gluck described it as a 'vivid on-the-ground account of the Thai insurgency showing how national politics, rather than minority religion, drives the violence that is too often ascribed either to ethnicity or Islam. This is a lesson that applies not only to Southeast Asia but to many parts of the world.'
I appear regularly on BBC radio and television, have written commentaries very recently for The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, The Independent, and The Economist, and am often cited in media outlets ranging from the New York Times to USA Today. I have also given briefings to senior officials including UN staff and the President of the Thai Senate.
My work often takes me to New York City, where I hold a visiting affiliation at Columbia’s University’s Weatherhead Institute, and am an Associate Fellow of the Asia Society. In December 2010, I was awarded an honorary doctorate in Tai Studies by Mahasarakham University.
I am the President of the European Association for Southeast Asian Studies (EuroSEAS), the largest Southeast Asian studies association in the world, and will have a two-year term of office from 2013 - 2015.
I curently hold a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship.
My main research interests lie in the politics of contemporary Thailand, including issues such as Buddhism, constitutionalism, political reform, the career of former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, the media, the monarchy, the role of the military, the Southern conflict, judicialization and the politics of justice.
I also focus on comparative politics in the Asia-Pacific region, including electoral politics, civil society, political transitions, and politics and media. I continue to visit Cambodia regularly.
I come from a family of teachers: I've taught for two years in a Japanese high school, worked as a TESOL teacher in Bangkok and Singapore, and have taught at university level in both Japan and Cambodia. I hold a PG Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education from the University of Leeds.
I teach 'Politics in Japan' (and have published two editions of a popular textbook based on this course), as well as 'Politics and International Relations of Pacific Asia', and the MA module 'Political Change in Southeast Asia'.
Eighteen of my PhD students have graduated since 1997. I am currently supervising several students working on Thailand and neighbouring countries, and am always interested in looking at applications from prospective doctoral students.
I have supervised topics on the following Asia-specific areas.
- Elections and political parties
- Civil society
- NGOs and protest movements
- Environmental politics
- Village-level politics
- Public intellectuals
- Politics of education
- Politics of corruption
- McCargo, D (2012) Mapping National Anxieties, Copenhagen: NIAS Press
- McCargo, D.J. (2008) Tearing Apart the Land: Islam and Legitimacy in Southern Thailand, Cornell University Press
- McCargo, D.J. (ed.) (2007) Rethinking Thailand's Southern Violence. National University of Singapore Press.
- McCargo, D.J.; Pathmanand, U. (2005) The Thaksinization of Thailand. Copenhagen: Nordic Institute of Asian Studies.
- McCargo, D.J. (2003) Media and Politics in Pacific Asia. Routledge.
- McCargo, DJ (2012) 'The Changing Politics of Thailand's Buddist Order' In Critical Asian Studies 44 (4) pp. 627 - 642.
- McCargo, DJ; Zarakol, A (2012) 'Turkey and Thailand: Unlikely Twins' In Journal of Democracy 23 (3) pp. 71 - 79.
- McCargo, DJ (2011) 'Politics by other means? The virtual trials of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal' In: International Affairs 87 (3) pp. 613 - 627.
- McCargo, DJ (2011) Informal citizens: graduated citizenship in Southern Thailand In: Ethnic and Racial Studies 34 (5) pp. 833 - 849.
- McCargo, DJ; Thabchumpon, N (2011) Urbanized Villagers in the 2010 Thai Redshirt Protests: Not Just Poor Farmers? In: Asian Survey 51 (6) pp. 993 - 1018.
- Duncan McCargo (2010), ‘Thailand’s Twin Fires’, Survival, 52 (4) pp. 5-12.
- Duncan McCargo (2010), ‘Autonomy for Southern Thailand: Thinking the Unthinkable?’ Pacific Affairs, 18 (2), pp. 261–281.
- Duncan McCargo (2010) ‘Thailand’s National Reconciliation Commission: a flawed response to the Southern Conflict’, Global Change, Peace and Security, 22, 1, February 2010, 75–91.
- Duncan McCargo and Lee, Hyon-Suk (2010), ‘Japan’s Political Tsunami: What’s Media got to do with It?’ The International Journal of Press/Politics,15, pp. 236–245.
- Duncan McCargo (2010), ‘Co-optation and resistance in Thailand’s Muslim South: The changing role of Islamic Council elections’, Government and Opposition, 45 (1), pp. 99–113.
- Duncan McCargo (2009) ‘Mapping national anxieties: Thailand’s Southern conflict’, RUSI Journal, 154, 3, July 2009, pp. 54–61.
- Duncan McCargo (2009), 'Thai politics as reality TV', Journal of Asian Studies, 68, (1), pp.7-19
- Duncan McCargo (2009) ‘The politics of Buddhist identity in Thailand’s deep south: the demise of civic religion?’ Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, 40, 1, February 2009, pp. 11–32.
- Duncan McCargo (2007) 'A hollow crown', New Left Review, January-February, pp.135–44
- Duncan McCargo (2006) ‘Thaksin and the resurgence of violence in the Thai South: network monarchy strikes back?’ Critical Asian Studies, 38, 1, pp. 39–71.
- (2005) Network monarchy and legitimacy crises in Thailand In: Pacific Review 18 (4) pp. 499 - 519 Routledge
Media Contact Areas
- Politics of Thailand
- Southeast Asian politics
- Room: 101, Botany House
- Tel: 0113 343 6865
- Fax:0113 343 4400
- Email: email@example.com