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Inertia or Ignorance: The Challenge of Dismantling Malaysia's Race-Based Politics

Inertia or Ignorance: The Challenge of Dismantling Malaysia's Race-Based Politics

Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad.

Free public lecture with Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad -
Malaysia's youngest ever MP: A new generation of opposition

Brought to you by Asialink, Asia Society AustralAsia Centre, and Asia Institute (The University of Melbourne)

Malaysia's Federal Constitution was formulated through a historical consensus among the Federation's main ethnic communities and the British administrators. While the Constitution provides for asymmetrical freedoms and responsibilities, equality as a fundamental liberty is enshrined.

Yet as authoritarian racial politics become more enshrined and Malaysia’s institutions are accused of sacrificing their liberty, integrity and transparency — there are acute tensions in the nation's social fabric. But Malaysia has an emerging "new politics" and a society that is demanding change through a fledgling new media. What is holding Malaysia back from dismantling its race-based politics — inertia or ignorance?

(Abstract provided by Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad)

Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad was elected as a State Assemblyman for Selangor, Malaysia's most industrialised and populous state in the historic 2008 General Elections. The youngest elected representative in the elections, he is from Parti Keadilan Rakyat (People's Justice Party/PKR), which is part of the Opposition People’s Alliance and is Malaysia's most successful multiracial party to-date. PKR and the People's Alliance are led by former Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Anwar Ibrahim.

Born in Kuala Lumpur in 1982, Nik Nazmi was educated in Malaysia and at King's College London. He has published two books: Moving Forward: Malays in the 21st Century (also published in Malay) and Coming of Age: A Decade of Essays 2001-2011. This is his first Australian visit, invited by the Malaysian Student Council Victoria Chapter.

Event is co-presented with Asia Institute www.asiainstitute.unimelb.edu.au

DATE:   Tuesday, 11th October 2011
TIME:   6:30-8.00 pm
VENUE:   Yasuko Hiraoka Myer Room, Level 1, Sidney Myer Asia Centre, The University of Melbourne (Cnr Swanston Street and Monash Road)
COST:   Free

Registration is essential.

For enquiries, please contact Roger Nelson: [email protected]

Event Details

11 October 2011
6:30pm - 8:00pm

Yasuko Hiraoka Myer Room, Level 1, Sidney Myer Asia Centre, The University of Melbourne, Parkville