The Hakkas of Sarawak: Sacrificial Gifts in Cold War Era Malaysia
This book tells the story of the Hakka Chinese in Sarawak, Malaysia, who were targeted as communists or communist sympathizers because of their Chinese ethnicity the 1960s and 1970s. Thousands of these rural Hakkas were relocated into “new villages” surrounded by barbed wire or detained at correction centres, where incarcerated people were understood to be “sacrificial gifts” to the war on communism and to the rule of Malaysia’s judicial-administrative regime.
The Hakkas of Sarawak looks at how these incarcerated people struggled for survival and dealt with their defeat over the course of a generation. Using methodologies of narrative theory and exchange theory, Kee Howe Yong provides a powerful account of the ongoing legacies of Cold War oppression and its impact on the lives of people who were victimized by these policies.
- Series: Anthropological Horizons
- World Rights
- Page Count: 240 pages
- Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.6in x 9.0in
Highly recommended. All levels.
Choice Magazine, vol 51:06:2014
“This book makes a significant and important contribution to the anthropology of history and collective memory. In moving prose, Kee Howe Yong provides a deeply insightful portrayal of the everyday lives of these Chinese workers and the imbrications of their memories of their communist past within their quotidian experiences of an oppressive present. No other work so sympathetically engages with the whole theme of how the memorialization of a past marked by violence and group persecution occurs in the case of contemporary Chinese in Malaysia.”
Donald M. Nonini, Department of Anthropology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
“The Hakkas of Sarawak makes an original contribution to studies of the Cold War and memory in Southeast Asia by examining how local communities experienced the Malayan Emergency and how the repression continues to resonate in their daily lives. Drawing on rich ethnographic material Kee Howe Yong reveals how this past continues to permeate the present of the ethnic chinese Hakka community of Sarawak, Malaysia”
Katharine McGregor, School of Historical and Philosophical Studies, University of Melbourne
Author InformationKee Howe Yong is an assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology at McMaster University.
Table of contents
Chapter 1 - Overseas Chinese
Chapter 2 - Greater Malaysian Plan
Chapter 3 - The Sri Aman Treaty
Chapter 4 - Any other day at the bus station
Chapter 5 - What’s there to tell
Chapter 6 - Virtuous subjects
Chapter 7 - Sites of impermanence
Chapter 8 - Facing the artefact
Subjects and Courses