1st Edition

National Identity, Language and Education in Malaysia Search for a Middle Ground between Malay Hegemony and Equality

By Noriyuki Segawa Copyright 2019
    220 Pages
    by Routledge

    220 Pages 17 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book explores the ways in which language and education policies have contributed to the development of national integration in Malaysia, by examining whether and how policies have succeeded in forming a middle ground.

    Considered through the lenses of policy-making structure and achievement, this volume examines the relationships between the formation of a middle ground in language and education policies and the political structure, economic growth strategies and social system. It then goes on to explore the extent to which these policies have contributed to national integration whilst providing a valuable discussion on the complexities involved in developing a consistent policy framework. Drawing on research surveys of Malay proficiency amongst ethnic Chinese people, it ultimately demonstrates how the unification of education streams has contributed to the spread of the Malay language as a major medium of inter-ethnic communication within the Chinese community.

    As the most up-to-date study of contemporary Malaysian politics, focusing on the issue of national integration, this book will appeal to students and scholars of Southeast Asian politics, ethnicity, and education policy.

    1. Introduction  2. Language and Education Policies: Shifting between Assimilation and Multiculturalism, 1957–present  3. Ethnic Politics, Electoral Bargaining and Negotiation  4. The Nexus between Development Strategies and Fluctuating Policies  5. Malay Preferential Policies and Nation-building  6. Search for a Middle Ground: Soft Assimilation Language and Education Policies, 1960s–1980s  7. Search for a Middle Ground: Accommodative Multiculturalism Language and Education Policies, 1990s–Present  8. New Approach towards National Integration  9. Conclusion


    Noriyuki Segawa is a Professor in the Faculty of International Studies at Kindai University, Japan. His research interests are in nation-building in Malaysia and Fiji.