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Malaysia - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture Paperback – June 1, 2008
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Malaysia is a tremendously complex place, legacies of British colonialism and the aftermath. While the book does mention the different tribes of people who make this place home, it doesn't mention how they are different. I don't even remember the book mentioning the natives in any detail (he does mention Dayaks, but I was under the impression that there are other tribes). Typical of Westerners, who don't like to talk about such things, he doesn't talk about the social position of the different tribes at all, or the various political upheavals which got them this way. It's a difficult and painful subject, and this dumb American said a few things which violated the local version of political correctness. From my observations: the Malay upper classes own everything. The Chinese effectively run all the businesses (many of which are owned by Malays). The Indians comprise a lot of the manual laboring classes. Vietnamese people (an important group of recent immigrants) work in the factories. Malays are the dominant tribe (as one would expect) make up all levels of society. There were horrific race riots mostly involving resentments against Chinese people, and the insurgency seemed to be funded by China as well. These are huge sore spots still, with Chinese residents.Read more ›
If you have been to South-East Asia before, then, the book is too basic and you might need to check other books to dig into Malaysian culture. and nuances. Many local ways of courtesy are similar to those of neighbouring country, so you already have an advantage and know many of the things said here.
Overall, the book is well written, clear and very useful. A bit to basic, perhaps.
It also does this in a fun way that is aimed at both the casual traveller and those travelling to Malaysia on business. The chapter on business etiquette is both informative and very interesting.
This is an indispensable guide and make sure you take a copy if you intend to visit Malaysia. It will certainly help you to get the most out of your trip.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm planning on visiting Malaysia in a few months, which is why I read this book. I'll probably be in a better position to write a review after I return from my vacation. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Peter McDonald
This book is okay. There are some important information provided. Some of the recommendations regarding interactions with the locals is worthwhile.Published 16 months ago by Robert C. Hendel
Book was informative. Shipping and seller were on point. Great work!Published 23 months ago by Aramis Alvarez