Fieldwork

Fieldwork

Mischa Berlinski

Another great novel of the foreigner’s experience in Thailand, this time from view of an American expat couple, one is a teacher and the other is a freelance journalist who gets caught up in a complicated story of an expat woman’s suicide in a Thai prison.  

He unearths the story of the woman, who was a cultural anthropologist living with a tribal group doing her academic “fieldwork” and got caught up in a twisted drama that crosses a few cultural pockets and ends (as the story begins) in a murder, a jail sentence, and a suicide.

This book is a fascinating window into lives of expats, academic anthropologists (apparently more complicated than they seem), and a fictional tribal Thai group which I’m not sure can relate to a real group of people, but the cultural disparities between natives and their visitors are there nonetheless.