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From Fragmented Identities To Post-Identity: Lin Xingqian’s Poetics Of Diaspora

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Chapter Summary

Lin Xingqian's case is discussed in this chapter illustrates the diasporic phenomenon of Mahua writers leaving their homeland, writing from outside the nation and arriving at what the author call a ?post-identity?: an identity which, although remaining exilic, comes after the overcoming of the nostalgia for Chineseness. The dividedness of their identities precipitates primarily from the ideology of ketuanan Melayu which promotes an exclusively three- in-one unity of bumiputra-or more accurately Malay-identity. In promoting the Malay agenda on all levels of Malaysian society and in constructing Malay culture as Malaysian culture, the state effectively sidelines the non-Malays, alienating them into their private sphere. Producing literature of direct political engagement had become almost impossible with the state?s prohibition of public discourse on sensitive issues involving race, religion and education.

Keywords: diaspora; Lin Xingqian; Malaysian culture; poetics

10.1163/ej.9789004168152.i-184.22
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