Making spaces, making subjects: Land, enclosure and Islam in colonial Malaya

Amrita Malhi

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    Land control struggles were central to multiple projects of enclosure in colonial Malaya. Indeed, enclosures created Malaya, a discrete geo-body constructed by bounding the Malay polities of the Malay Peninsula. It also underpinned technocratic regimes for managing land, forest and property, including in Terengganu, the last peninsular state to be colonised. Enclosure, however, was directed not only at territorialising landscapes; it was also a biopolitical project for bounding subjects and subjectivities, producing both Malayans and racially-constructed Malay peasants. One response by Terengganu cultivators, a holy war, was grounded in an audacious globalism, through which they rejected the enclosures which bound them in ever-tightening webs of discipline and control.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)727-746
    JournalThe Journal of Peasant Studies
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2011


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