Tunku: An Odyssey of Life Well-Lived and Well-Loved

KOBKUA SUWANNATHAT-PIAN is Professor of History and Senior Fellow at the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI), Tanjung Malim, Perak, Malaysia. She is an acknowledged authority on Thai-Malaysian relations and contemporary Thai socio-politics.

Penerbit UM (First Printing, 2017)
287 pages including Bibliography and Index


In stock

ISBN: 9789831008614 Product ID: 2338 Subject: Sub-subjects: , , , ,

Tunku: An Odyssey of Life Well-Lived and Well-Loved offers a comprehensive account of Tunku’s life, both personal and political. There is little doubt over the position of Tunku Abdul Rahman in Malaysia’s history. Known as the Father of Independence and also Father of Malaysia, Tunku stands head and shoulders above the other leaders of the country as evidenced by the vast volumes of literature on the man and his achievements. It studies Tunku’s life from his childhood, education, and his eventful adulthood to his political ups and downs, his struggles as a private citizen, and his enormous contributions to the nation, the Malays, and Islam.

Tunku: An Odyssey of Life Well-Lived and Well-Loved convincingly argues that, contrary to the belief among certain quarters, it is the Tunku who not only defended but also installed the special position and privileges of the Malays as a fundamental criterion in the formation of the Federation of Malaya.

Besides his outstanding achievements in securing Malaysia’s sovereignty and independence and the formation of Malaysia, Tunku was also known to be incorruptible which perhaps, has contributed to his being poorer after he stepped down after nearly two decades at the helm of the country. Staying true to his own self and his socio-political values in and out of office have gained him the love and respect of a multiracial society that will always remember this extraordinary man and much-loved leader.

Preface and Acknowledgements

Part One: Understanding the Man Up Close

1. The Environment
Biographical Notes
Kedah: The Home-State
Royal Siblings and Relatives
Friends and Good Acquaintances

2. The Man
Tunku: General Character
Likes and Dislikes
His Life Philosophy
The Man and His Faith
Trademark Idiosyncrasies

Part Two: A Working Man: Civil Servant, Politician and Numero UNO Leader

3. Servant of the State
Tunku’s Resume as a Civil Servant
The Pre-War Years, 1931-1941
The War Years 1941-1945
The Judiciary Experience

4. Politician by Choice, 1951-1955
Tunku and His Decision to Enter Politics
Years In the Political Jungle: 1951-55
UMNO on the Eve of Tunku’s Presidency
Tunku and the Party’s Darkest Political Fortune, 1951-1952
Contemporary Socio-Political Scenes of His Time since 1948
Test of Strength: Municipal and Town Elections 1952
The Birth of the Alliance and Its Independence Road Map
The 1955 General Election

5. Chief Minister and the Independence of Malaya 1955-1957
Chief Minister and His Cabinet
Tunku’s Socio-Political Beliefs
Main Actors in the Post-War Malayan Political Scenario
Tunku and His Socio-Political Apparitions
Internal Struggle for Independence—Tunku’s Finest Hours
The Last Milestone of the Independence Journey

6. Prime Minister and Nation-Building
An Overview
The Socio-Cultural Identity
Ceremonials, Etiquette and Culture
Physical Landmarks
Racial Harmony
Politico-Security Strength
Political Stability
Foreign Policy Principles
Territorial Unification and Unity: The Birth and Consolidation of Malaysia
The Genesis
The Formation of Malaysia
The Consolidation of Malaysia

7. Disillusionment and End of an Era
Unstoppable Downward Slide
The May 13 Racial Riot and Tunku
Departure from the Central Stage

Part Three: Private Citizen Extraordinaire

8. A Working Private Man
A Chronological Summary
Tunku and the Islamic Secretariat (IS)
The Hardships of Being a Private Citizen 1971-1976

9. Private Citizen Extraordinaire
The Star and Tunku
PERKIM: Revival and Expansion
A Living Socio-political Reference


Weight0.470 kg
Dimensions18.5 × 14.5 × 0.8 cm




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