Scholar Activist Khoo Khay Jin: Reflections on the Penan Sarawak and Malaysia


SIRD & ALIRAN (First published, 2023)
348 pages


In stock

ISBN: 9786297575117 Product ID: 39415 Subject: Sub-subjects: , , , , , ,

Scholar Activist Khoo Khay Jin: Reflections on the Penan Sarawak and Malaysia is a tribute to a towering yet unassuming intellectual, Khoo Khay Jin, one of the best-read scholars of his generation in Malaysia and a brilliant statistician. Undoubtedly, ‘Scholar-Activist’ is a very appropriate description of the man, Khoo Khay Jin. So too the title of this book. He was never an arm-chair critic confined to providing analytical input from behind a desk as he personally took part in a number of focus group discussions with communities across the two states to obtain and analyse data and input from various stakeholders including grassroots communities and to ensure their voices were heard and taken into consideration in national and state planning. His commitment towards providing a voice to these communities continues to be inspiring and noteworthy for all Malaysian development practitioners.

In this anthology, there are two stand-out pieces both written in 1992; (i) “The Grand Vision”, and (ii) “The Seduction of the West”. In “The Grand Vision”, Khoo Khay Jin discussed the political and economic turbulence that the country experienced during the 1980s, when Umno was split down the middle. No, it was not merely on account of differences in Mahathir‘s and Tengku Razaleigh’s personalities and their different political styles that the split occurred. Yes, there were significant differences in policy preferences. And, so too, differences in the coalitions that coalesced around them. In the wake of our current turbulence post GE15—when the Malay population is split into six or seven parties, Khoo Khay Jin already captured the fragmentation of the Malay community some 30 years ago, when he linked it to differences in policy preferences, not merely political styles on individual leaders.

Through “The Seduction of the West”, Khoo Khay Jin posited that the ‘systemic forces governing the world (would) remain the same’ when the demise of Communism was occurring. From the viewpoint of the South, the Cold War had not ended—for that Cold War was always about keeping the South safe for capitalism, the West/North. The demise of the Soviet Union meant that there would be no counter-weight to the excesses of the United States; so, there occurred an ‘apparent collapse of room for maneuver for the South. Significantly, America’s invasion of Iraq occurred in 1991-92, follows with other wars against Afghanistan, and wars or proxy wars like in South Yemen, Libya, Serbia subsequently. More disconcerting, there also occurred this unseemly rush among the states in the South to adopt the socio-economic recipes promoted by the North, which centred on the unfettered operation of the market, financial deregulation, trade liberalization and privatization, i.e. the ideology of liberal capitalism. It was as though there was no other option for societies to adopt if they wished to develop. This is the ‘seduction of the West’ that Khay Jin lamented.

Preface and Acknowledgements

Part I: Friends Remembering and Celebrating the Scholar-Activist

1. UN Malaysian Individual of the Year Award, 2012
2. My Father by Khoo Boo Chen
3. Deepest Sympathies and Condolences from the Orang Ulu Communities of Belaga, Balui, Linau and Murum
4. Joint Statement by Malaysian Social Scientists
5. A Privilege to have Journeyed with You Khay Jin by Francis Loh
6. In Memoriam: Khoo Khay Jin by Khoo Boo Teik
7. Bejalai – Journeying through Life by Andrew Aeria
8. Road Less Travelled in Search of Justice, Truth, Integrity: Homily at Funeral Service by Fr Fabian Dicom
9. I have Lost a Great Friend by Syed Husin Ali
10. The Best and Brightest — Irreplacable Loss by Diana Wong
11. Tributes by Other Friends and Colleagues Ann and Jayl Langup, Anne Munro-Kua and Kua Kia Soong, Clive Kessler, Ong Nai Phuan, Yusuf Bangura, James Jesudason, Graham Brown
12. Tribute from the Editors of JMBRAS
13. Khay Jins Contribution to PE Research was Immense and Invaluable by Chang Yii Tan
14. A Wickedly Likeable Angel Who Sought the Devil in the Details by Maznah Mohamad
15. He could see Deeper, Longer-term Trends by Anil Netto
16. Remembering Sdr Khoo Khay Jin by Jeyakumar Devaraj
17. An Academic Comrade Par Excellence by Johan Saravanamuttu
18. Mentor, Friend, Companion, and So Much More by Lye Tuck Po

Part II: The Penan and the Orang Ulu

19. Viability of Bakun Dam Project Threatened (2007)
20. Towards Equity for Bumiputera Minorities: Case of the Penan (2005)
21. Negotiating the Rapids: Bakun and the Orang Ulu (1995)
22. Caring about Bakun (1994)
23. The Penan of the Danum and Pleiran Areas (1994)
24. The Sapé in the Musical Life of the Orang Ulu (1997)
25. Orang Ulu Musical Twilight…Endangered Music and Instruments of the Penan (1997)

Part III. Sarawak Politics, Society and Development

26. The 2008 Federal Elections in Sarawak (2010)
27. Agi Idup, Agi Ngelaban? Will the River Burst the Dam? (2009)
28. Political Tsunami in Sarawak (2006)
29. The Taming of the Dayak: The PBDS Saga Continues (2004)
30. Sarawak: An Election Twice Delayed (2001)

Part IV: Malaysian Politics, Society and Development

31. A New Dawn? March 8, 2008 Exorcised the Demons of May 13, 1969 (2008)
32. Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! Greed was the Agenda of the Day! (2005)
33. Beyond UMNO vs PAS: Elections as Opportunity (2001)
34. Forays into Forex: BN’s RM9.3 billion Loss (1993)
35. The Grand Vision: Mahathir and Modernization (1992)
36. The Seduction of the West: Old Thoughts for a New Age (1992)

Part V: Biodata, Publications & Presentations

Weight0.557 kg
Dimensions22.8 × 15.2 × 2.1 cm

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