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23
Jul
2007

Thailand: Culture Ministry Encourages Parents to Choose Thai Nicknames

The Thai Culture ministry wants to encourage parents to nickname their children with Thai names after a survey displayed that in the Isaan province of Khon Kaen 45.9 percent of the children have English nicknames already. "Now, more and more parents give English nicknames to their children," Culture Ministry permanent secretary Vira Rojpojchanarat said.
In Thailand people have nicknames additionally to their official first and last name. Official names hardly play a role in everyday life in Thailand. Instead, nicknames are used even on the job. If people are close to each other or younger than you, they may call themselves by their nicknames instead of using pronouns. Some Thai nicknames have meanings, and some don’t. Treat them as mere names – don’t try to translate the names because some might be funny or not make any sense like pig (muu), chicken (gai) or fish (pla). Common Nicknames are: yai, duk-daa, gung, mot, an, jäng, dim, mai, bum, dtui, än, ding, nooi, däng, mäm, nüng, miao, nok, gop, oo, nit, nuu

Source: Benjawan Poomsan Becker: Thai for intermediate Learners and The Nation

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