Modern Malaya was born in a period of war, insurrection, and monumental social upheaval. Tim Harper's acclaimed study, newly available in paperback, examines the achievement of independence in 1957, not primarily through the struggle between Imperial Britain and nationalist elites, but through the internal struggles that late colonial rule fostered at all levels of Malayan society. It contains new research on the impact of the Second World War in Malaya, the origins and course of the Communist Emergency, and urbanisation and popular culture, and charts the responses of Malaya's communities to more intrusive forms of government and to rapid social change. Dr Harper emphasises the various conflicting visions of independence, and suggests that although the experiments of late colonialism were frustrated, they left an enduring legacy for the politics of independent Malaya. This book sheds new light on the dynamics of nationalism, ethnicity, and state-building in modern Southeast Asia.
'In The End of Empire and the Making of Malaya, T. N. Harper offers a wide-ranging and detailed analysis of Malayan social trends, their causes and effects, in the years before independence ('Merdeka') in 1957... this comprehensive study opens new perspectives on how far pressures and initiatives in a divided society can generate change or conflict.' John Gullick, Times Literary Supplement 'It is without doubt a very significant piece of historical writing. The amount of detail collected and meticulously referenced, is impressive.' Bijdragen