The Sacred Geography of Bangkok’s Markets


Vernacular shrines pervade the markets of Bangkok, the capital of Thailand and a globalized city in Southeast Asia. Based on long‐term ethnographic fieldwork in Bangkok, this article traces the history of cross‐border flows and shifting political economic arrangements that remapped the sacred geography of the city. It considers the consolidation of a pantheon of enchanted figures into a modern ‘prosperity religion’ that is practiced in commercial enterprises as well as in daily life across the country. Mapping the spiritual geography embodied in market shrines reveals changing mobilizations of local and transnational circuits of spiritual power in relation to the shifting national and transnational flows of material and cultural power.