Nation Building, English as an International Language, Medium of Instruction, and Language Debate: Malaysia and Possible Ways Forward (doi: 10.14425/00.50.27)

University, Phan Le Ha, Joyce Kho And Brendan Chng, Monash (0023) Nation Building, English as an International Language, Medium of Instruction, and Language Debate: Malaysia and Possible Ways Forward (doi: 10.14425/00.50.27). Journal of International and Comparative Education.

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Abstract

In this article, we discuss Malaysia?s major language policies surrounding Bahasa Malaysia and English as medium of instruction (MOI) since its independence. We show how issues involving a national language vis a vis English are shaped by different ethnic and social groups? competing views regarding these languages. We argue that the language debate in Malaysia is largely an emotive one that carries a historical baggage which no one is yet ready to discard and until such time, it will continue to represent a nation divided by nationalism, race-based politics and globalisation. However, we also interpret the Malaysian government?s termination of English as the MOI in certain key school subjects starting in 2012 as not necessarily an arbitrary rejection of English but as a positive move, given the many problems associated with the over-reliance on English in education and language policies throughout Asia. We, thus, see the most recent act known as ?To Uphold Bahasa Malaysia & To Strengthen the English Language? (MBMMBI) as a necessary, firm, strategic and timely response by the Malaysian government to globalisation, nation building, the increasing international role of English, and the pressure to produce knowledge and maintain national cultural identity in today?s world

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: anguage debate, English as an International Language, Malaysia, nation building
Depositing User: MR. ADNAN YAHYA
Date Deposited: 13 Oct 0023
Last Modified: 13 Oct 0023
URI: http://repository.um.edu.my/id/eprint/114827

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