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Yasmin Ahmad’s

ORKED! The Trilogy

IVE! 6-PAGE EXCLUS

THE BOUNDARIFICATION OF MALAYSIAN SOCIETY How Yasmin’s work reflects Malaysia & how it recommends change.

Vol. 1/No.1/2009

WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!

THE TRILOGY STORY Lost (in) the plot? We plug the gaps!

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S AHEAD!

ER WARNING: SPOIL

THE TRILOGY STORY YASMIN’S AHMAD’S “ORKED” TRILOGY SEES THE “BUMIGEOISE” (MALAY, AND MIDDLE CLASS – AS COINED BY ALFIAN SAAT) LONGING FOR THE ETHNIC OTHER. Joshua Ng

Sepet (2005) (Slit Eyes in reference to Malaysian-Chinese). Orked is a young, well-spoken and feisty Malay lady who has just finished her secondary school education. She ends an abusive relationship with her Malay ex-boyfriend. On the other side of town, Jason is a working class Chinese boy sells bootleg DVDs. When they meet at the marketplace where Jason works, sparks fly. Orked’s friends more then slightly disapprove of the inter-racial relationship, while Jason’s Chinese friends and Nyonya mother come to accept it quite easily.

When Jason & Orked meet in Sepet...

The only problem is that Jason brings excess bag- It may not have been their first time... gage into the relationship. He has ties to a Chinese secret society, and has impregnated the sister of the gang-leader. When Orked learns about Jason’s past, she withdraws from the relationship and eventually gets back together with her Malay ex-boyfriend. She does not realize that Jason has no love for the Chinese girl, and only promises to marry his ex-lover to legitimize the pregnancy and newborn baby. By the time And boy has Jason changed Orked finally learns that Jason’s motives for marrying the girl were pure, she has received a scholarship to study in England and is on the way to the airport. In the end, the Orked-Jason (read: Malay-Chinese) relationship proves to be impossible love. The film ends when her attempt to reach out and tell Jason she loves him fails, and her phone call to Jason (while he rushes on his motorbike to the airport) kills him. Orked! October 2009 | 3


THE TRILOGY STORY

Gubra (2007) (Anxiety)

Orked is now married to a Malay man much older than she is. Ariff actually seems to be a responsible and loving man. Life seems to have turned out well for her – she lives in a comfortable, middle class home and even rides a luxury saloon, thanks to her husband. Things seem to be wonderful. But Orked’s dad experiences a heart attack. This leads Orked to meet Allan, Jason’s older brother, and to also find out that Ariff has been cheating on her. Orked leaves Ariff and the film ends with Alan giving Orked Jason’s box of memories of her. The post-credits scene gives the viewer some closure on the Orked-Jason relationship with a snapshot of an alternate universe where Jason and Orked are happily married, and wake together in the morning for Islamic prayers. Orked! October 2009 | 4

In a rural part of Malaysia, a stark contrast of two worlds co-exists. A Muslim Bilal (religious leader who calls Muslims to prayer) and his wife Wan live next to two Malay prostitutes. Temah is the older of the two sex workers. When she discovers she is HIV positive, Wan offers to take Temah’s son (Shahrin) into the Bilal’s household. Temah’s problems are exacerbated when Shahrin’s father returns to plunder her hard-earned money. But the Bilal will not stand for such a transgression, and makes sure the money is returned to Temah. By the film’s close, Temah has succumbed to her disease.


Mukhsin * * * (2007) The film is a prequel, a retold diegesis from Orked’s perspective. She narrates the story of her eponymous first love at ten years old. It is revealed (perhaps unsurprisingly) that Jason had his eyes on her even before Orked meets Mukhsin. The Orked-Mukhsin romance takes place one summer break during Orked’s primary school days. Mukhsin is a boy from another village, who comes from a difficult family. He and Orked seem to be a reasonably compatible couple. But Orked cannot seem to remove Jason from her memories. But since Orked is the narrator of the film, it is unclear whether Jason is added fictitiously or if he really was a part of her childhood. Young

Yasmin Ahmad (1958-2009) Jason staring longingly at Orked in 2 almost random scenes. Doppelgangers of Jason and Orked – married with kids – appear in her kite-flying memories with Mukhsin, effectively a continuation of the post-credits alternate reality in Gubra. Towards the end of summer, Orked and Mukhsin fall out because of her boyish insistence on playing Galah Panjang (a Malay field game). Finally, Orked concludes the narration of her memories, dwelling on the first time she met Jason during childhood, and musing that “lovers don’t meet each other somewhere; they’re in each other all along. We don’t always find the one we carry inside us. But love is kind. He gives us second chances. I found mine.” Orked! October 2009 | 5


THE BOUNDARIFICATION OF MALAYSIAN SOCIETY

IN the context of contemporary global capitalism, words bandied about like “progress”, “modernity” and “globalization” often polarize the “tradi-

tional” and “modern” elements of societies. Malaysia, in search of its position in such an era, also naturally grapples with these issues. Only it does this from the viewpoint of a secular, multicultural state (with Islam as official religion). To understand how “traditional” Malaysia might negotiate its contemporary shift into “modern” Malaysia, this film analysis looks at the “Orked” Trilogy and shows its reflections and recommendations for Malaysian society through the navigation of Malaysian social boundaries. There is a reason why the late Yasmin’s trilogy is particularly useful for this study. She is able to break free of the state-building agendas associated with any Ideological State Apparatus. As one of the few independent filmmakers apart from the entirely state-held or state-linked mainstream media in Malaysia, Yasmin represents civil society and its concomitant plurality of views about society’s boundaries. I will prove that she identifies existing social boundaries, and prescribes new potential boundaries in the films, thus reflecting the reality of Malaysia and simultaneously offering alternative narratives to the normative Malaysian state discourse. In total, I analyze four inter-connected social boundaries: Ethnic Boundaries, Religious Boundaries, Cultural Boundaries, and Gender Boundaries. Joshua Ng

ETHNIC BOUNDARIES In her trilogy, Yasmin most clearly identifies a Malaysian society where “race” is arbitrarily politicized, and ethnic groups are systematically disassociated one from another: In Sepet, Keong agonizes that “hundreds of years ago it was so easy [Chinese and Malays intermarrying] and now that we’re supposed to be civilized, it’s hard.” With this, Yas-

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min alludes to deep historical issues behind the constructed racialization of Malaysia. She essentially deconstructs the epistemological categorization of “races” in colonial Malaysia. Keong hints at an “easy” past of non-racialism, where the Malays had no conception of race before colonization – bangsa (race) was a term borrowed from other vernaculars, the “races” were originally amalgamated in a pluralistic mélange of society.2

When Jason and Orked meet for the first time, their encounter takes place in at the pasar pagi (morning market).


ANALYSIS: The Boundarification of Malaysian Society Here, Yasmin further illustrates the historical development of the Furnivallian plural economy which developed during the colonial era in Malaysia – different ethnies only met in the marketplace and had limited contact in the socio-cultural sphere. She thus alludes to a racially-segregated Malaysia being the product of colonialism in the 19th Century.3 Yasmin continues Malaysia’s racialization narrative by alluding to the results of the 1969 race riots: the 1971 New Economic Policy and its pro-Malay Bumiputera (prince of the soil) affirmative action policy. Jason scores 7 A1s in his secondary school exams, while Orked does slightly worse at 5 A1s. Yet Orked gets a scholarship to England, obviously aided by the Bumiputera policy. Later in the film, Jason expresses Yasmin’s disgruntlement when he mentions to Keong on the phone that he wants to persuade Orked to “give it up to someone who needs it more”. Yasmin clearly identifies the resulting reified ethnic boundaries and inter-racial suspicion when Keong reveals he has never had enough contact with Malays to even dislike them, and the inter-racial couple’s friends don’t lend support for the relationship:

Boundaries? An idea first popularized by Fredrik Barth (1968) to analyze the interaction between ethnic groups. He argued on one hand, that boundaries could become reified when there was conflict between two (ethnic) groups, and on the other that mutual agreement could lead to porous, crossable boundaries. In my analysis I expand his idea of ethnic boundaries to analyze other boundaries too - religious, cultural, and gender boundaries.

One can already guess at Yasmin’s prescription for an ethnically boundaried Malaysia. Her famous commercial for the Malaysia-owned Petronas, “The Love of Tan Hong Ming” shows a young Chinese boy and Malay girl in love. This became an essentialization of the multiracial “Bangsa Malaysia (Malaysian Race)” idea even before the Orked trilogy was released. Yasmin’s proposed vehicle for multiracial society is to cross these ethnic boundaries. In Mukhsin, Orked attends a Chinese primary school and learns mandarin. She is quizzed by Mukhsin about her father’s decision to send her there, to which she replies “maybe it’s because I already know how to speak Malay.” Through this, Yasmin sets Orked as an example to her viewers, that one can cross ethnic boundaries without losing touch with their ethnic roots. At the same time, Yasmin makes a statement about inter-ethnic relations. In Malaysian society, nonMalays often feel that their languages are marginalized in school.4 She uses Orked – as a member of the majority Malay ethnic group who surprisingly learns a minority language – to show a real concern for Malaysia’s minority groups. Ultimately, Yasmin prescribes interethnic marriage as the solution for bridging ethnic boundaries in Malaysia. The song that Orked’s family sings in Mukhsin, “Ikan di laut [fishes from the sea], asam di darat [spices from the land]. Di dalam periuk [together in a kitchen], bikin muafakat [making magic in a pan],” is telling about the sort of harmony she predicts from a cosmopolitan mixture of ethnicities. However, the real star of the trilogy – and her intermarriage thesis – is the JasonOrked relationship. At one

level, the realities of “hyphenated” ethnicities existent in Malaysia5 are reflected in the relationship. Yasmin also carefully depicts the reality of Malaysia’s Sharia Law. In Gubra’s post-credits-scene, an alternate-reality Jason and Orked are happily married, and Jason has converted to Islam. At another level, their boundarycrossing inter-racial romance proves to be so intense that the liminality between the “good” reality (with Orked and Jason married in an alternative story in Gubra, and then with a child in Mukhsin) and the “bad” reality (with Jason dying at the end of Sepet) is not big enough to stop Jason and Orked from loving each other in either parallel narrative. This is why Jason writes to Orked in Sepet, “I’m going to be with you forever. It’s our 缘份 yuán fèn (destiny).”

The destiny of the different ethnic groups, according to Yasmin’s prescription for Malaysia, is to cross the ethnic boundary, marry each other and produce children of mixed eth-

“I’m going to be with you forever. It’s our 缘份 yuán fèn (destiny).” - Jason to Orked Orked! October 2009 | 7


ANALYSIS: The Boundarification of Malaysian Society nicity – just as she is one herself. In short, Yasmin reflects the historical beginnings and contemporary social realities of an ethnically boundaried Malaysia. She offers an alternate narrative to the ethnic boundaries through her star-crossed lovers in Jason and Orked. RELIGIOUS BOUNDARIES Yasmin also negotiates and scrutinizes the boundaries of Malaysian religious discourse through the Orked Trilogy. She does this by bringing what is real Malaysian coffeeshop conversation to the big screen – questions on whether an act really is morally wrong, or can be acceptable or even right. In Sepet, Orked walks into a char siew (barbequed pork) stall. The viewer’s immediate reaction is to recoil in horror, for pork is typically seen as haraam (forbidden) to the Muslim. But Yasmin chooses to ensure that the scene is made as casual and candid as possible, Orked shrugging off the initial panic of having to enter a “non-muslim” space.

Orked meets Jason’s friend Keong for the first time and has a drink while Jason and Keong eat their char siew(!). The viewer inevitably scrutinizes her hands and mouth, and is satisfied when she personally never eats the haraam pork or transgresses the boundaries of Islamic law. Yasmin’s authorial intentionality surfaces when one realizes that she is satirizing real episodes of religious panic in Malaysia. Some such occurrences – Piglet soft toys were removed from Guardian Pharmacy’s range of Winnie the Pooh free gifts; there were once calls for the film Babe to be banned; one journalist even recounts how a documentary he caught had the word “pigmentation” censored.6 Yasmin

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cleverly uses the well-defined boundary of eating pork which is haraam, to show that entering a char siew stall does not by definition make one a pork-eater. If one can accept this, then one can also acknowledge that the calls for the removal of Piglet, Babe and “Pigmentation” are in fact culturally-constructed failsafes rather than being part of Muslim religious boundaries. Yasmin has thus identified a set of “religious” boundaries which are subject to societal distortion. In Gubra, the bilal (religious leader who calls on Muslims to prayer) is on his way to the mosque. He sees a dog in the middle of the road, checks to see if anybody’s watching, and proceeds to pat the dog. “This time she’s really done it,” the viewer first chokes in reaction. But the Bilal is then clearly shown to be rescuing the dog from being again maimed by traffic, as the dog limps away on three legs.

This then opens up the same discussion as with Orked and the char siew: In fact, the dog is not haraam, but its saliva and nose are. With proper cleansing rituals, the bilal would be able to resume his duties. The issue of religious boundaries surfaces here again. Malaysia’s interpretation of Islam is based on Mazhab Shafie ideology (a particular Islamic school of thought). This leads to the realization that the dog might not be haraam under another set of Islamic boundaries. Most significantly, Yasmin problematizes the issue of saving a life versus merely “keeping oneself clean”. Is saving an animal – about which the prophet Mohammed preached kind treatment to – less important than the socialized values of a Muslim community which often treats dogs in general (and not their saliva and noses) as haraam? With this, Yasmin re-examines the conventional boundaries of Islam to show that the boundaries of many socialized “religious” norms need re-thinking. In the pre-credits scene of Gubra, Yasmin juxtaposes the prayers at a Buddhist temple, an Islamic mosque, and a Christian church. The multifaith prayer scenes interpolate and fit seamlessly with one another.


ANALYSIS: The Boundarification of Malaysian Society Here, Yasmin makes recommendations to set new boundaries for Malaysia’s nascent religious pluralism. Her rendition of the various faiths operating side by side contrasts various Prime Ministers’ past pronouncements that Malaysia is an Islamic state.7 In fact, Yasmin is more accurate in her portrayal of religious pluralism in Malaysia because its constitution declares it a secular state.8 Her narration of a harmonious multi-religious Malaysia attempts to bridge the Muslim/non-Muslim boundary, then recently exacerbated by the Lina Joy controversy.9 At the same time, Yasmin has managed to bring the two seemingly disjointed storylines in Gubra together through this sequence of religious pluralism. Through this she chooses to focus on the inclusiveness that religion can bring to society, thus reflecting the more open, progressive views of the popular Islam Hadhari (civilizational Islam) movement in Malaysia.10 Such an expanding view of Islamic boundaries is symptomatic of a wider trend of globalization in Malaysia. In Yasmin’s humanistic discourse, Malaysia should work towards new boundaries of religious pluralism. Gubra closes with “the lamps are different, but the light is the same”. CULTURAL BOUNDARIES Yasmin reflects the boundaries of a cosmopolitan, glocalizing Malaysia superimposed against the boundaries of a withdrawn, ethnic-nationalist society. In Mukhsin, Orked’s dad has a jam band comprising various western instruments – bass, guitars, and violin. They play a self-composed, Malay song as Orked and her mother dance in the rain to the Latin American chacha-cha and Taiwanese dances. This cosmopolitan fusion of the global and the local (they dance in a suburban village setting) is a pleasant mix-up of modern and traditional forms. But it is sharply interrupted by a snide neighbor’s comments that these are “Malays who have forgotten their roots.” Here, Yasmin analogizes the snide neighbor to conservative elements in Malaysia who insist on drawing strict cultural boundaries.

the glocal. When the family takes up a very natural waltz, the viewer wonders whether the waltz was even originally European. Their well-coordinated glocalized dance now goes uninterrupted, as any potential interpellator – this time Mukhsin – watches from outside, unable to intervene. This indicates that Yasmin prescribes the expansion of cultural boundaries in acceptance of cosmopolitanism and cultural pluralism. Glocalization? Originally a Japanese term to illustrate how global ideas are adaptable to the local level. This suggests that globalization does not simply erode local culture, but rather - presents an opportunity for cultural exchange.

GENDER BOUNDARIES Finally, Yasmin reflects the gendered boundaries of Malaysia and offers an alternative discourse, the widening of these boundaries. Yasmin lived in a Malaysia which had cancelled the pop star Beyonce’s titillating performances and chastised other international acts for being “immoral”11 – a contradiction to Kuala Lumpur’s goals of economic globalization and “Visit Malaysia”12 tourism. As a result of these unbudging cultural boundaries, Malaysia subsequently lost the business of other international acts including Cold Play, Christina Aguilera, Eric Clapton and the Red Hot Chili Peppers to Singapore.13 Later in the film, Yasmin shows the private triumph of glocalization when Orked’s family quite literally embraces the song “Ne Me Quitte Pas” (If you leave).

The well-known tune has been translated from the original French and covered in at least twenty languages by various artists, clearly an icon of

In Mukhsin, the playground where Orked and Mukhsin meet is a strictly gendered space. The boys play Galah Panjang (a field game) while the girls play bride-and-groom. One girl asks Orked why her father helps her mother out in the kitchen, “is it because your father is hen-pecked?” Through Orked’s determination to transgress these gender boundaries, Yasmin makes her commentary on Malaysian society. She challenges the stereotype that the woman’s place is in the private sphere (the kitchen, where Orked’s father helps) and not in the public sphere. This alludes to Malaysian politics, where there has never been a female Prime Minister, and there is a disproportionate number (24 of 222) of female members of parliament in the Dewan Rakyat (House of Representatives).14 On top of this, women are often faced with a glass ceiling in the economic sphere. When Yasmin portrays Orked to be well-spoken, even teaching Mukhsin to speak proper English, she highlights the disparity between the education level of women and their access to the public sphere of Malaysian society. While women outnumbered men in the 2006-2007 intake to local

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ANALYSIS: The Boundarification of Malaysian Society universities,15 they are denied equal access to the public spheres of politics and the economy. Yasmin completes the analogy when Mukhsin kicks Orked out of the public male space of the Galah Panjang, with total disregard for the bond they share. Next Yasmin offers her solution – the Malaysian woman should expand the boundaries of her agency without abandoning her role as nurturer: In Mukhsin and Gubra, two women are victimized in the same way – they have adulterous husbands. But their characters and response differentiate the outcome of their plight. In Mukhsin, Orked’s neighbor is shown to be the traditional woman who had earlier criticized the uninhibited Orked and her mother for losing sight of their roots while dancing in the rain. She fulfils all the traditional roles of wife and mother – staying at home, learning to cook her husband’s favorite foods and bearing him two children. But as the film closes, her traditional means of winning him back fail; she is tearfully unable to stop her husband from leaving.

In contrast to the “conservative” woman who has lost her battle, Orked responds in power by abusing the cheating Ariff in English and Malay, and by throwing punches at him. She finally expels Ariff from her life, but not before humiliating him in front his lover.

By contrasting these two archetypal women, Yasmin has cast doubt on the Malaysian woman’s traditional disempowered response to men. She shows Malaysian women that they can be initiators and not just passive receivers. This is perhaps a response to the state of real husband-wife treatment in Malaysia, including divorces resulting from mobile phone text messages. In essence, Yasmin’s prescription for such mistreatment is expanding the boundaries of the individual agency of women – to modernize, be socially and economically empowered and be able to respond to spousal abuse. With this, Orked is able to treat Ariff the same way she was treated – “You promised apa that you would never hurt me [you broke that promise, now I’m breaking mine]. It’s modern times, sayang.” But Yasmin never allows her suggested boundaries of the modern woman to be led astray. In Gubra, the modern middle-class Orked is initially shocked when she enters Alan’s bare-bones working class flat. It is a sharp contrast to the luxury she is seen to have lived in with Ariff. But Orked’s discomfort quickly dissolves into tears when she is presented with the box of memories Jason has kept of her. It turns out that material comforts are less important to her than matters of the heart; Orked has preserved her “soul” in the midst of all her modernity. Through this, Yasmin reflects the many careerwomen in Malaysia who have pushed the boundaries of their gender, are educated, command good salaries, yet

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are unafraid to be in touch with their emotions and to get their hands dirty – one of whom is Yasmin herself. On top of this, Yasmin never lets her icon of the modern woman get into sexually compromising situations. We see this in Sepet where Orked struggles to free herself from Johari’s sexual assault, and in Mukhsin where she does not allow Mukhsin to sensually touch her. “Don’t touch me like that,” she chastises, “it tickles”.

Here Yasmin evinces that a modern woman’s expanding boundaries do not include sexual deviance. This in turn is a commentary on a society which displays moral panic each time women’s bodies are at stake. Such episodes happened in 2005 when the International Islamic University in Malaysia coerced a non-Muslim girl into wearing a tudung (headscarf), when the singer Beyonce was recently banned for “immoral” costumes,16 and when fatwas (religious laws) were issued against wearing heavy lipstick or high heels, entering beauty pageants, and even “tomboy behavior”.17 Finally, Yasmin ensures that the expanding boundaries of her modern woman does not mean a shift away from a woman’s nurturing role. In Gubra, there are two instances of women who while at work simultaneously fulfill their traditional roles as nurturers and providers by calling home and giving cooking instructions. Their presence is so understated in the film that the viewer could easily miss them. Yet Yasmin intentionally weaves them quietly into the subtext of the film to show that the modern woman still works diligently behind the scenes to provide for their families both in the public sphere and the private sphere. This is a keen reflection of the “supermom syndrome” indentified in many of the career women of Malaysia. CONCLUSION


ANALYSIS: The Boundarification of Malaysian Society 3 Lian Kwen Fee (2006). Race and Racialization in Malaysia and Singapore. In Race, Ethnicity and the State in Malaysia and Singapore. Leiden: Koninklijke Brill. p. 219. 4 Lee, Hock Guan. (2006). The Globalization and Ethnic Integration in Malaysian Education. In Malaysia, recent trends and challenges (eds. Saw Swee-Hock and Kesavapany, K.). Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. p. 231.

Through identifying and challenging the norms of society, the Orked Trilogy clearly elucidates the existing ethnic, religious, cultural, and gender boundaries in Malaysia – and how they could be in the future. Yasmin’s observations of a racially-segmented, religiously-socialized, culturally-rigid and patriarchal Malaysia are offset by her prescriptions of multiracialism, religious pluralism, cultural diversity, and gender equality. The Orked trilogy can thus be seen as a blueprint bridging the gap between “traditional” and “modern” Malaysia. These are three films any academic of Malaysia and Southeast Asia in general should not miss. The author wishes to thank the following for their intellectual contributions: Dr Rusaslina Idrus from the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore, and Professor Wan Zawari Ibrahim from the department of Anthropology and Sociology in the University of Malaya. REFERENCES 1 Tan, Jun-E & Ibrahim, Zawawi. (2008). Blogging and Democratization in Malaysia – a New Civil society in the Making. Petaling Jaya: Strategic Information and Research Development Centre. p. 14. 2 Lian Kwen Fee (2006). Race and Racialization in Malaysia and Singapore. In Race, Ethnicity and the State in Malaysia and Singapore. Leiden: Koninklijke Brill. p. 219.

5 Yin Ee Kion. (2008). Through Race Tinted Glasses. In Out of the Tempuring, critical essays on Malaysian society (eds. Fong Chin Wei and Yin Ee Kion). New South Wales: East West Publishing. P.299300. 6 Surin, Jacqueline Ann. (2008). On a tolerant Islam, in Shape of a Pocket. Petaling Jaya: The Edge Communications Sdn Bhd. p. 193. 7 New Straits Times. (18 July, 2007). Najib: We are not secular. Retrieved from factiva on 22 October 2009. 8 New Straits Times. (19 July 2007). MCA: We are a secular nation. Retrieved from factiva on 22 October 2009. 9 Loh Kok Wah, Francis. (2009). Merdeka, Modernity and the Lina Joy Controversy. In Old vs New Poltics in Malaysia. Petaling Jaya: Strategic Information and Research Development Centre. pp. 224-225. 10 Chong, Terence. (2006). The Emerging Politics of Islam Hadhari. In Malaysia, recent trends and challenges (eds. Saw Swee-Hock and Kesavapany, K.). Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. p. 26 11 Yoong, Sean. (2009). Beyonce delays Malaysia show amid Muslim criticism. Associate Press. Retrieved 22 October 2009 from http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/as_ malaysia_people_beyonce

pore: Monsoon Books Ltd. p. 143. 13 Gatsiounis, Ioannis. (2008). Beyond the Veneer, Malaysia’s Struggle for Dignity and Direction. Singapore: Monsoon Books Ltd. p. 149. 14 Inter-Parliamentary Union. (2009). Malaysia, Dewan Rakyat (House of Representatives). Retrieved 22 October 2009 from http://www.ipu.org/parline/ reports/2197.htm 15 Surin, Jacqueline Ann. (2008). Old Habits Need Changing. Petaling Jaya: The Edge Communications Sdn Bhd. p. 137 16 United Press International. (2009). Beyonce’s Malaysia show postponed. Retrieved 22 October 2009 from http://www. upi.com/Entertainment_News/ Music/2009/10/20/BeyoncesMalaysia-show-postponed/UPI53571256049995/ 17 Sisters in Islam. (2008). Malaysian Insider – Threat to Ban Yoga Tests Boundary of Tolerance. Retrieved 22 October 2009 fromhttp:// www.sistersinislam.org.my/index. php?option=com_content&task=vie w&id=874&Itemid=195 FILMOGRAPHY Ahmad, Yasmin. (Director). (2005). Sepet [Motion Picture]. Malaysia: Golden Satellite

Ahmad, Yasmin. (Director). (2007). Gubra [Motion Picture]. Malaysia: Golden Satellite

Ahmad, Yasmin. (Director). (2007). Mukhsin [Motion Picture]. Malaysia: Dragon Jester Entertainment

12 Gatsiounis, Ioannis. (2008). Beyond the Veneer, Malaysia’s Struggle for Dignity and Direction. Singa-

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The Boundarification of Malaysian Society (2009)