The image of a beautiful Thai women is one that is known throughout the world; however, only slightly less well known is the image of a beautiful Thai women who was born a man. Call them what you willl – transexual, transgender, ladyboy, katoey – their place in Thai culture goes back thousands of years, but despite the history, and despite Thailand being very accepting of them, it’s not always an easy life.

On this episode we’re joined by Ms. Prem, a transgender lady who was born a man but now lives as a woman. We have a fascinating chat with Prem about her life and the difficulties she faces everyday, not least of which is the perception that all transgenders are only capable of prostitution, beauty pagents, or hair salons. Prem – who has a very good job with a high-level international agency – has fought against this stereotype and has seen progress, although it’s slow going.

She also talks openly about how she grew up knowing she was different than other boys, how the media’s perception of what is beautiful creates stereotypes, what it’s like dating men who may or may not know her past, her experience fighting a military draft that labels all transgenders as mentally unstable, and what she thinks about *that scene* in the Hangover 2.

Show Links:

BK Magazine Bangkok Podcast

Haydn and Mahlers 4th Bangkok Podcast Haydn and Mahler’s 4th
Thailand Philharmonic Orchestra presents Joseph Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C major, performed by cellist Tapalin Charoensook and Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No 4 in G major, featuring soprano soloist, Colleen Jennings. Jul 22, 7pm; Jul 23, 4pm. Mahidol University Music Auditorium

Bangkok Podcast Water Putting thoughts on H2O
An exhibition explaining the story of drinking water, from the traditional Thai way of collecting rain water in large earthenware pots to the billion dollar industry that is bottled water today. Through July 10. TCDC, 6F, Emporium Shopping Mall

Hard Rock Cafe Bangkok Podcast Hard Rock Café
Just when The Hard Rock was about to go soft, on Jun 8, they sharpened their image with a complete revamp. The rock pub feel is now a little more edgy-chic (picture Axl Rose in a tux to get the analogy). 424/3-6 Siam Square Soi 11, 02-251-0794. BTS Siam

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