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This article aims to study the communication and the perception of “THAINESS” in PadThai kits sold in shopping malls and department stores at the Pathumwan and Ratchaprasong
intersections. The theory of semiology had been adopted to analyze the communication of “THAINESS” and semi-structured interviews were used to study the perception of “THAINESS” by foreign tourists.
The study reveals that four signs, namely, brand name which comprises the name of the product, the trademark and slogan; pictures; traditional Thai decorations; and the background story of the product are used to communicate six meanings of “THAINESS”as follows: 1) abundance of food and flavors; 2) the bond between the system of relatives; 3) freedom and simplicity; 4) artistry and neatness; 5) affinity with nature; and 6) Siam in the past. The focus group of foreign tourists perceives freedom and simplicity, as well as Siam in the past, as being important parts of THAINESS. However, apart from THAINESS represented in the products, prices and the package design are key factors in purchasing behavior.
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