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Malaysian Race, Ethnicity and Ethnic Relations

Race, Ethnicity, and Ethnic Relations: A Malaysian Case Study

A Curriculum Project for the Fulbright-Hays Seminar Abroad: Malaysia and Singapore, 2005


William Guinee

Department of Sociology and Anthropology

Westminster College

Fulton, Missouri

November, 2005

Race, Ethnicity, and Ethnic Relations: A Malaysian Case Study

Use of this Module. I began this curriculum project with the intent of writing some notes to be used during the ethnicity section of my “Introduction to Cultural Anthropology” course at Westminster College. The course is aimed primarily at first year liberal arts students, and I normally only have one or two fifty-minute lectures to introduce a few ideas concerning ethnicity. The idea for this document then was to frame an outline of a few broad ideas about ethnicity and illustrate it with material from the Malaysian situation. Malaysia is particularly relevant in this context due to the extreme historical and current importance of ethnicity in human relations, economics, politics, and the general tenor of the nation. Consequently, the 2005 Fulbright-Hays seminar abroad in Malaysia and Singapore had, as one of its primary missions, an investigation of ethnicity and ethnic relations. The incredible superfluity of material on this subject, however, quickly overcame my intentions for this document; it just kept growing. There is now no way that these notes can be condensed into a couple of short lectures. Rather, I will need to take a small subset of this information for my use in the introductory course. I am presenting this fuller version of the notes, however, as they may prove more generally useful for other scholars who may wish to emphasize different features than I in their teaching. I also intend to further expand the current notes, at a later date, for use as a larger section of a course more directly oriented towards issues of ethnicity (especially issues of the “plural society”) or the region of Southeast Asia. Continue reading

Sunday, November 12, 2006 Posted by | Commentary, General Info, Issues | 2 Comments


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