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Some Theoretical Remarks on Thai Private International
Law Compared to the Continental and the Common Law Traditions*

Prasit Pivavatnapanich**

"..the realm of the conflict of laws is a dismal swamp,
filled with quaking quagmires, and inhabited by
learned but eccentric professors who theorize about
mysterious matters in a stranger and
incomprehensible jargon. The ordinary court, or a
lawyer, is quite lost when engulfed and entangled in it. "
-Professor Prosser

Introductory Remarks

The main aim of present work is, not to introduce and examine every facet of private international law, to clarify basic concepts and answers to some vexing problems that have been haunting Thai academic circles for many decades. Why does the paper resort to a comparative method? The answer is very simple because private international law, or conflict of laws, is chiefly concerned with a legal method or technique of choosing and applying as well as interpreting foreign law to a civil case containing foreign element(1).

As regards the methodologies used in this piece, it is widely accepted among renowned scholars that, among other things, a comparative analysis is an appropriate approach to understand how private international law works(2), thereupon, the present author relies my theme of study on the comparative method. Not surprisingly, most eminent professors of private international law, such as Ernst Rabel, Martin Wolff, Hessel Yntema, Graverson, Albert Ehrenzweig et al, are comparativist! Accordingly, a study of private international law without the comparative survey inevitably leads to a legal narcissism, as in American lawyers and the so called the American Revolution(3), resulting in rigid adherence to their own idea, consequently parochial views.

Part 2             Footnote

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