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Distributed for Hong Kong University Press

Floating on a Malayan Breeze

Travels in Malaysia and Singapore

What happens after a country splits apart? Forty-five years ago Singapore separated from Malaysia. Since then, the two countries have developed along their own paths. Malaysia has given preference to the majority Malay Muslims—the bumiputera, or sons of the soil. Singapore, meanwhile, has tried to build a meritocracy—ostensibly colour-blind, yet more encouraging perhaps to some Singaporeans than to others. How have these policies affected ordinary people? How do these two divergent nations now see each other and the world around them? Seeking answers to these questions, two Singaporeans set off to cycle around Peninsular Malaysia, armed with a tent, two pairs of clothes and a daily budget of three US dollars each. They spent 30 days on the road, cycling through every Malaysian state, and chatting with hundreds of Malaysians. Not satisfi ed, they then went on to interview many more people in Malaysia and Singapore. What they found are two countries that have developed economically but are still struggling to find their souls.

308 pages | 21 color and 5 b&w illus. | 6 x 9


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Reviews

"Part quirky travelogue, part social critique, Floating on a Malayan Breeze weaves random encounters with Malaysians into shrewd political commentary. From meeting former Communist Party guerillas to being stuffed silly with durians by friendly uncles, this is one account that gets right on the ground with everyday lives."

City Nomads

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