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Producing the subaltern: epistemic violence against the Malay left, c.1945–1957

Azra bin Azlira, Armand (2024) Producing the subaltern: epistemic violence against the Malay left, c.1945–1957. Indonesia and the Malay World, 51 (151). pp. 231-256. ISSN 1363-9811

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Identification Number: 10.1080/13639811.2023.2245644


This article examines the epistemic violence enacted onto the Malay left (represented broadly by the Malay Nationalist Party, MNP), through the collaboration between the Malay aristocracy, represented by its political vehicle the United Malay National Organisation (UMNO), and the British colonial state. It traces this epistemic violence through British re-colonisation in 1945 leading up to the independence of Malaya in 1957. This article argues that this collaboration has resulted in persistent constructions of the ‘Malay’ image as a discursive tool by marginalising those that deviate from this image into subalternity. This discursive control is salient not only in ensuring the fulfilment of the material interests of the colonial state (in re-colonisation), and the Malay aristocracy (in the consolidation of feudal institutions), during the period but is also a persistent narrative used in the current day as a form of legitimacy for the post-colonial state.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2024 The Author
Divisions: International History
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DS Asia
J Political Science > JC Political theory
J Political Science > JQ Political institutions Asia
Date Deposited: 22 Aug 2023 13:57
Last Modified: 26 Feb 2024 10:30

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