Malay world

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The concept of the Malay world or Malay realm (Malay: Dunia Melayu or Alam Melayu, Jawi: دونيا ملايو or عالم ملايو) has multiple meanings depending on its context.

Linguistically, it refers to the Malay-speaking countries and territories of Southeast Asia - Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Southern Thailand.

In a geopolitical context, the term has been used interchangeably with the Javanese concept of Nusantara and the colonial term for the Malay Archipelago.[1] It has been more broadly defined as a region, homeland of the Austronesian people that extends "from the Easter Islands in the east to Madagascar in the west",.[2] However, these wider definitions of the Malay world remained controversial and criticized for their primary derivation from the anachronistic concept of a Malay race.

In a cultural sense, the Malay world refers to the homeland of ethnic Malays that was historically ruled by various Malay sultanates in Maritime Southeast Asia. This area includes the Malay peninsula, the coastal areas of Sumatra and Borneo, and the smaller islands in between.[2][3][4]

Origin[edit]

Portuguese historian Emanuel Godinho de Erédia's 16th century account says the early phase of the Malay world began with the consolidation of Laut Melayu ("Malay sea") under Melakan dominance in the 15th century.[5] The area Erédia called the "Malayos sea" covers the Andaman Sea in the north, the entire Malacca Strait in the centre, a part of Sunda Strait in the south and the western South China Sea in the east. The region was generally described as a Muslim centre of international trade, with Malay language as its lingua franca.[6]

Erédia's description indicates that Laut Melayu was a geo-religio-sociocultural concept, a concept of geographical unity characterized by the common religious belief and cultural features.[8] This was strongly attested when the notion of Malayness and the common Malay identity based on Islam began taking shape during the Melakan era.[9][10][11] The subsequent expansion of Melakan commercial and religious influence beyond this cultural border had resulted in the early stage of Malayisation process, heavily marked by the spread of Classical Malay language,[12] Islam[13] and Malay customs.[14] This assimilation process continued and intensified even after the demise of Melaka in the early 16th century. The post Melakan era saw the rise of numerous Melakan-modelled Malay sultanates in a larger geographical sphere of the region, ranging from the small sultanates like Asahan, Deli, Langkat and Serdang, to the powerful imperial sultanates like Brunei, Johor and Pattani. The emergence of these sultanates resulted in a broader Malay cultural and commercial influence and the eventual expansion of the Malay world.[15]

The strong Malay cultural and linguistic diffusion in the region as observed by the European scholars during colonial era, would later became the basis for the construction of several anthropological, geographical and linguistic terms.[16] Among the examples are the concept of Malay race, the name Malay Archipelago for the region, and several linguistic terminologies such as Malayo-Polynesian languages and Malayic languages. These xenisms have been very influential in shaping various modern views on the extent of the "Malay world".

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Amin Sweeney (2011). Pucuk Gunung Es : Kelisanan dan Keberaksaraan Dalam Kebudayaan Melayu-Indonesia. Jakarta: Kepustakaan Populer Gramedia (KPG). p. 295. ISBN 978-979-9-10365-9. 
  2. ^ a b Farrer, D. S. (2009). Shadows of the Prophet: Martial Arts and Sufi Mysticism. Springer. p. 26. ISBN 978-1-4020-9355-5. 
  3. ^ Milner, Anthony (2010). The Malays (The Peoples of South-East Asia and the Pacific). Wiley-Blackwell. p. 42. ISBN 978-1-4443-3903-1. 
  4. ^ Benjamin, Geoffrey; Cynthia Chou (2002). Tribal Communities in the Malay World: Historical, Cultural and Social Perspectives. Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. p. 7. ISBN 978-981-230-166-6. 
  5. ^ Andaya, Leonard Y. (2008). Leaves of the Same Tree: Trade and Ethnicity in the Straits of Melaka. New York: University of Hawaii press. p. 200. ISBN 978-082-4-83189-9. 
  6. ^ Mohamed Anwar Omar Din (2011). "Asal Usul Orang Melayu: Menulis Semula Sejarahnya (The Malay Origin: Rewrite Its History)". Jurnal Melayu, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia. pp. 28–30. Retrieved 2012-06-04. 
  7. ^ Mohamed Anwar Omar Din (2011). "Asal Usul Orang Melayu: Menulis Semula Sejarahnya (The Malay Origin: Rewrite Its History)". Jurnal Melayu, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia. p. 30. Retrieved 2012-06-04. 
  8. ^ Mohamed Anwar Omar Din (2011). "Asal Usul Orang Melayu: Menulis Semula Sejarahnya (The Malay Origin: Rewrite Its History)". Jurnal Melayu, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia. p. 31. Retrieved 2012-06-04. 
  9. ^ Andaya, Barbara W.; Leonard Y. Andaya (1984). A History of Malaysia. London: Palgrave Macmillan. p. 55. ISBN 978-0312381219. 
  10. ^ Barnard, Timothy P. (2004). Contesting Malayness: Malay identity across boundaries. Singapore: Singapore University press. p. 7. ISBN 9971-69-279-1. 
  11. ^ Mohd Fauzi, Yaacob (2009). Malaysia: Transformasi dan perubahan sosial. Kuala Lumpur: Arah Pendidikan Sdn Bhd. p. 16. ISBN 978-967-3-23132-4. 
  12. ^ Sneddon, James N. (2003). The Indonesian language: its history and role in modern society. University of New South Wales Press. p. 74. ISBN 0-86840-598-1. 
  13. ^ Milner, Anthony (2010). The Malays (The Peoples of South-East Asia and the Pacific). Wiley-Blackwell. p. 47. ISBN 978-1-4443-3903-1. 
  14. ^ Esposito, John L. (1999). The Oxford History of Islam. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-1951-0799-9. 
  15. ^ Mohamed Anwar Omar Din (2011). "Asal Usul Orang Melayu: Menulis Semula Sejarahnya (The Malay Origin: Rewrite Its History)". Jurnal Melayu, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia. pp. 31–34. Retrieved 2012-06-04. 
  16. ^ Ooi, Keat Gin (2009). Historical Dictionary of Malaysia. Scarecrow Press. p. 181. ISBN 9780810863057. 

Bibliography[edit]