From Condoms to Cabbages by Thomas D'Agnes
An Authorized Biography of Mechai Viravaidya
In Thailand a condom is called a "Mechai". Mechai Viravaidya has used this contraceptive device to promote family planning and later as a preventive measure against HIV/Aids. But there's more to this man than condoms and birth control. This book provides many fascinating insights about the man who represents a juxtaposition of East and West. It shows how he has used social marketing, wits and charisma to good effect in his relentless quest to improve the livelihood of the poor. It explains why Mechai has been labeled a visionary iconoclast and cheerful revolutionary all the way through his working life.
Thomas D'Agnes spent 22 years living in Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Laos working in family planning and public health. he worked with Mechai at the Population and Community Development Association (PDA) in Thailand from 1978-82. He currently teaches at the University of Southern California International Public Policy and Management Program.
Bangkok Post Books
420 pages with B&W Photographs