Category: Malaysia

What Does a Vote for an Islamic Party Mean?

Policymakers often wonder if democracy in Muslim-majority countries is empowering Islamists, and look to electoral support for Islamic parties for clues. Scholars of religion and politics frequently respond that “it’s more complicated than that.” In a new paper (PDF), I offer an explanation of why it is hard to learn anything about why voters support […]

“Malays are the Real Immigrants”: On Malaysia’s Political Taboo

The past several days have seen a growing debate in Malaysia about ethnicity and indigeneity. The proximate trigger is a speech delivered by M. Kulasegaran, Malaysia’s Minister of Human Resources and a Malaysian of Tamil heritage. The Malay-language newspaper Utusan Malaysia reported that the speech—delivered in Tamil—contained the following statement: Kebanyakan orang telah lupa, orang […]