Modern Malaysia is characterised by its elaborate monarchy, as well as by its sharply plural society – a Muslim-Malay majority, but with very large Chinese and Indian minority communities. There is not just one royal ruler: apart from the country’s King (or Yang di-Pertuan Agong ), nine of the states in the federation (which consists of thirteen states and three federal territories) have Rulers (seven with the title ‘Sultan’). Every five years, the Rulers choose one among them to be King. The country, not surprisingly, has many royal family members with the
Guanxi and the creation of ‘intentional’ communities
In both Malaysia and Singapore, the Underworld tradition’s mass popularisation has been brought about by differing combinations of societal catalysts, thereby producing both unities in and diversities between the two Underworld traditions. Both have involved the same inversion of Heaven to Hell deity worship, visually characterised by a predominantly shared material culture constructed around the veneration of Tua Di Ya Pek. However, expedited by a limited land and population demographic, Singapore’s bureaucratic ability to exercise
Chapter 7 focused on the influence of ethnic minority status on the creation of community in Malaysia’s Underworld tradition, and the purpose of this chapter is to expand on this theory and to further illustrate significant differences between the Underworld traditions in Singapore and Malaysia. While offerings to ancestors and wandering spirits are integral to Seventh Month rituals in both locations, the ethnographic section of this chapter illustrates an Underworld Ghost Month calendar that is
Coffin rituals and the releasing of exorcised spirits
channelled there since 1996, Mr Zhang noting that at that time there were very few tang-ki in Kuala Lumpur trancing Underworld deities. Proud that his was one of the first temples where they could do so, he lamented that, even now, Underworld deities are more prevalent in Penang than in Kuala Lumpur. This, he suggested, is because Penang’s City God temple is the eldest in Malaysia, even though their Chenghuang is not from Anxi. “Ours is from Anxi,” he explained, and, reminiscing, remarked in rising tones of incredulity, “There were many temples in China before Mao, then
This study investigates contemporary Chinese Underworld traditions in Singapore and Malaysia, where the veneration of Hell deities is particularly popular. Highlighting the Taoist and Buddhist cosmologies on which present-day beliefs and practices are based, the book provides unique insights into the lived tradition, taking alterity seriously and interpreting practitioners’ beliefs without bias. First-person dialogues between the author and channelled Underworld deities challenge wider discourses concerning the interrelationships between sociocultural and spiritual worlds, promoting the de-stigmatisation of spirit possession and non-physical phenomena in the academic study of mystical and religious traditions.
Fantasy and the supernatural are everyday expressions of the imaginative experiences of Malaysian and Singaporean women writers who use the Gothic to explore and expose the contradictions within their societies, constraints upon peoples lives, and most specifically, womens roles. In tales of wealthy families and their bondmaids, growing up, investment, education, marriages, the supernatural and fantasy run everywhere alongside realistic factual accounts to critique contradictions, and highlight little ironies, some of which have been generated by or supported by the,colonial presence, and some of which emanate from their own cultural traditions. Many cultural and individual contradictions are generated by recognition of the need to simultaneously maintain what is valuable in tradition, benefit from what was brought by colonialism, and move on to create new ways of being. Through the gaps and fissures of colonial homes and those of grand Chinese or Malay families leak tales of repression and silencing legitimated by cultural, economic and gendered differences. The repressed return, as they do in all good Gothic tales, to bring cultural and personal discrepancies to the notice of the living.
decided to introduce new
laws without this evidence base to stifle what they define as fake news. The Malaysian
government, for example, introduced legislation banning ‘news, information, data and
reports which is or are wholly or partly false’. India, the UK and France are among other
countries considering laws for misinformation. Paul Bernal, a legal researcher argues that the
‘fake news crisis’ is a straw man, an excuse for governments that have wanted to
shut down certain types of debate for some time: ‘the fake news saga… provides an
Four Decisive Challenges Confronting Humanitarian Innovation
Gerard Finnigan and Otto Farkas
across Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore ( Koplitz et al. , 2016 ). The excess all-cause mortality
due to short-term exposure to particulate matter (PM2.5) polluting the air was
estimated at 11,880 deaths (95 per cent CI, 6,153–17,270) ( Crippa et al. , 2016 ).
Local NGOs and multilateral agencies based in Indonesia responding to people
suffering the choking haze had little knowledge, understanding or guidance of how to
reduce the impact for the community in need.
revising its 2003 Anti-Terrorism Law due to the public's fear of possible abuse of power. 5
Malaysia's management of counterterrorism since independence has been determined by two key factors – the role played by the police's usually hidden Special Branch (SB) unit, and the existence of preventive laws. The function and contribution of Malaysia's SB is crucial in facing current terrorist movements such as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS; later known only as the Islamic State (IS)), al Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiyah (JI). In fact, Malaysia is one of the few
The legal prowess of the first-line bureaucrat in Malaysia
Jamie Chai Yun Liew
sought. The following discussion uses the case study of stateless
persons in Malaysia, but the insights gained from this case study
pertain to any jurisdiction that relies on a regulatory state in
implementing government regimes and policies.
The administrative state and administrative
The rise of the regulatory state
in democratic, common law