Race or Civilization: The localizing of 'The Malays'

    Research output: Book/ReportBook

    Abstract

    In his lecture, Prof Milner explored the history of the idea of Malayness, and the re-crafting of the idea of 'Malay race' proposed by the Western colonizers. Perusing the definitional variations in historical references to the Malays, he suggested that it was particularly in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries that the idea of the 'Malay race' was forged under the impact of colonialism. Describing bangsa Melayu as a 'concept in motion', Prof Milner cautioned facile dating of the historical emergence of a people who self-consciously identified themselves as the 'Malays' before the colonial period and naming the community as a race or an ethnic group. He noted that the various names used in reference to different communities during the pre-colonial period barely evoked any emotive reactions for the people described. Therefore, he suggested that, "it might be best to speak not of a transcendent 'Malay' identity but rather of a raja-centred world" for the period before the nineteenth century. --Helen Ting in, Newsletter of the Institute of Malaysian and International Studies, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationMalaysia
    PublisherUniversiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
    Number of pages31
    ISBN (Print)9789834344375
    Publication statusPublished - 2010

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