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By Timothy P. Daniels

This article comprises an exam of techniques of cultural citizenship in peninsular Malaysia.

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Extra info for Building Cultural Nationalism in Malaysia: Identity, Representation and Citizenship (East Asia History, Politics, Sociology, Culture)

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He hid on the outskirts of the kingdom. One of his four sworn brothers, Hang Jebat, could not accept this injustice and plotted against the ruler. A noble who helped Hang Tuah escape, and knew of his whereabouts, asked him to come back to defend their ruler against the feared threats of Hang Jebat. Hang Tuah comes back, loyal as ever to his ruler and kills his sworn brother who stood up on his behalf in the name of justice. Hang Jebat is conventionally remembered as one of the great warriors of Melaka, but one who was a traitor, while Hang Tuah is seen as the hero, who placed loyalty to his ruler above all else.

It is important to note here is that the Portuguese settlers did not construct a racial barrier between themselves and the colonized in the same way that the Dutch and British colonizers were to do after them. Portuguese policies, unlike their successors, promoted the creation of a “mixed” Christian population of their descendants. “As a result of these intermarriages a new breed of people with eastern customs and habits evolved. The offsprings [sic] of those marriages were called ‘Mesticos’ or Topazes.

Chinese and Indians attended English schools, more than Malays did, but they both also attended Chinese and Indian language medium schools. Likewise, Malays attended Malay-medium schools and Islamic schools. “Whites” were the chief administrators and traders who stereotyped themselves as civilized, industrious, and moral. “Whiteness” was the principal model of prestige and status aspiration and “white” officials protected this image by censoring any films that portrayed “white” men in a negative light and deporting any “white” women engaged in prostitution (Lee 1986:31).

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