Minorities Matter: Malaysian Politics and People Volume III
‘This timely book centres on one of the Malaysian nation-state’s weakest spots: its peculiar construction and treatment of minorities. As different visions compete over how a “New Malaysia” should (not) look like, this rich collection of essays elucidates how various exclusions and inequalities have historically evolved, where we stand now, one year after the downfall of UMNO/BN’s “eternal government”, and in which directions Malaysia’s future political culture might be heading in.’
Dominik M. Müller, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology
Bringing together a group of both international and Malaysian scholars, Minorities Matter: Malaysian Politics and People Volume III, is the third instalment in the ‘Malaysian Politics and People’ series, a series which has tracked Malaysian politics and society from the outcome of GE12 to the present day. Published in the aftermath of the fall of the BN government, Minorities Matter looks at the contemporary situation of Malaysian politics and society with a particular focus on those who are often left out of the national narrative, minorities, to understand the ways in which minority groups, from women to East Malaysians, the Orang Asli, refugees and more, have contributed towards, and been affected by, political change in Malaysia. With a particular focus on the problem of political culture, Minorities Matter highlights both the political and social changes, as well as continuities, witnessed since the 14th General Election highlighting, through the lens of minority groups, the contemporary contestations which now dominate Malaysian politics.
About the Author
Sophie Lemière is a Political Anthropologist at the Ash Center for Democracy at Harvard University. She received her PhD from Sciences-Po, France. She has been awarded the postdoctoral Fellowship at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and the NUS-Stanford Lee Kong Chian Distinguished Fellowship. In 2019-2020, Sophie will be an International Visiting Scholar at the Humanities Center, Stanford University and a Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy, Washington D.C.
Sophie’s current work explores the intangible elements of political life particularly the political imaginary and legitimacy and the role of charisma, emotion and personality politics in the construction of political and national narratives. During the GE14 campaign she was given access to the inner circle of Mahathir’s campaign for 6 months, from nomination day to victory day for her forthcoming monograph (2020) which will explore the re-invention of Mahathir.
Since 2014 Sophie has edited the ‘Malaysian Politics and People’ series, aimed towards the publication of original scholarship addressing both a general and academic audience within and outside of Malaysia, producing two previous volumes Misplaced Democracy (2014) and Illusions of Democracy (2017).