Colonial kings in the metropole
The visits to France of King Sisowath (1906) and Emperor Khai Dinh (1922)
in Royals on tour
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Politicians, the press and the public flocked to see the King of Siam, the paparazzi following his every move, and the politicians discussing the international relations of one of the few Asian countries to escape European colonisation. The king's visit was particularly delicate because of recent armed clashes between the Siamese and the French in Southeast Asia and because of the ambition of some to make Siam a French colony or protectorate. This chapter examines tours by two Southeast Asian monarchs: King Sisowath of Cambodia in 1906, and Emperor Khai Dinh of Annam in 1922. The Vietnamese dynasty, Khai Dinh's son Bao Dai remained in France as a student after the 1922 tour, and returned to Paris after a trip to Hué for his coronation in 1926. The French recruited Vietnamese as soldiers for the European theatre and as labourers in munitions factories and other wartime industries in the metropole.

Royals on tour

Politics, Pageantry and Colonialism




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