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Luk kreung

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Luk kreung

A luk khrueng (Thai: ลูกครึ่ง), literally "child half", although understood as "half [a] child", is a colloquial reference in the Thai language to a person who is of mixed Thai and other origin.[1][2]

In the mid-20th century, the number of luk khrueng increased dramatically in the period following World War II, with the increasing number of Western residents and visitors to the country. Many were the children of American servicemen who came to the country in the 1960s and 1970s, when there were several large US military bases in the country. While some of these servicemen formed lasting relationships with Thai women, some luk khrueng were the product of temporary relationships with "rented wives" or prostitutes, a fact which led to some discrimination in that era. Some Thais were also hostile because of the perceived lack of racial purity but most were quite accepting.[3]

In the modern era, many luk khrueng are born of relationships and marriages when Westerners come to live and to work in Thailand, or when Thai people go to study in Western or foreign countries.[4] In more recent generations, luk khrueng have become accepted and even highly embraced by society, and many luk khrueng have carved out a prominent role in the entertainment industry, in which their often fluent English and their Caucasian features (such as fair skin, larger or colored eyes and tall physique), which are deemed attractive in Thai culture, have proved to be advantageous. Much of the Thai population finds luk khrueng highly attractive because of these features, and within teenage culture, they are also extremely popular.[5]

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