This stimulating new reading of constructions of ethnicity in Malaysia and Singapore is an important contribution to understanding the powerful linkages between ethnicity, identity, and nationalism in multiethnic Southeast Asia.
The narrative of Malay identity devised by Malay nationalists, writers, and filmmakers in the late colonial period associated Malayness with the village (kampung), envisaged as static, ethnically homogenous, classless, indigenous, subsistence-oriented, rural, embedded in family and community, and loyal to a royal court. Joel Kahn challenges the kampung version of Malayness, arguing that it ignores the immigration of Malays from outside the peninsula to participate in trade or commercial agriculture, the substantial Malay population in towns and cities, and the reformist Muslims who argued for a common bond in Islam and played down Malayness.For sale in Asia, Australia, and New Zealand by NUS Press (Singapore)ASAA Southeast Asia Publications Series
Author: Kahn, Joel S.;Joel S. Kahn
is a professor at LaTrobe University, Australia.