Palace, Political Party And Power: A Story Of The Socio-Political Development Of Malay Kingship
by Suwannathat-Pian, Kobkua
About This Book
After independence in 1957, the Malay monarchy was compelled to embrace Westminster-style constitutional monarchy, under which the role of the monarch is symbolic and affairs of the nation are run by Parliament and the executive branch. Palace, Political Party and Power: A Story of the Socio-Political Development of Malay Kingship, traces the history of the Malay rulers from the late colonial period to the first decade of the 21st century, considering the implications of the decline of the Malay rulers under colonial rule, the role of the Japanese Occupation of Malaya in defining postwar Malay identity. A key element of that identity was the relation between the Malays and their Rulers, and UMNO - the United Malays National Organisation - positioned itself the "official" voice of the Malays and the Rulers.
The postwar settlement underwent a significant change after the shocking outcome of the March 2008 General Election weakened UMNO's hold on power. Subsequently, the Malay Rulers have "reinvented" themselves as active players in the affairs of the nation and have recovered some of their traditional rights. This book describes socio-political developments since the departure of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad have that worked in favour of a royal resurgence, and shows how the rulers have become a power to be reckoned with.
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