Posts Tagged ‘Malaysia’

International Coffee Hour 2010

 The International Coffee Hour (ICH) continues in the library (Studio 2)  this semester.   On February 2, it was LAOS; followed by MALAYSIA on February 9, then SUDAN on February 23.

 

The presenters: Solomon Xiong, Eugene Ng, Arrol Tiw Jun Jie and Dhruv Doshi were outstanding!  They were knowledgeable, interesting and very enthusiastic about their country. 

Laos

Xiong

   

Malaysia

Ng and Jun Jie

Sudan

Doshi

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International Coffee Hour: Malaysia

The country of Malaysia is one of diversity, according to psychology major and Malaysian native Sin Lee Loh.

Malaysia, which rests in the heart of Southeast Asia is a place that is very safe in respect to its geography. With its complete lack of volcanos, and the Indonesian islands in place to block it from typhoons, it is, as Ms. Loh said, a very prime location.  In addition to its lovely location, Malaysia is a country rich with diversity.

Malaysian Flag

Did you know that around 50% of the population of Malaysia is Malay?  Which means they subscribe to the Malay culture and are Sunni Muslims.  One of the most interesting aspects of Malay culture is the practice of giving so much care and attention to the craft of clothing.  In fact, in the past, a woman’s eligibility for marriage was assessed based on her level of skill with beadwork and sewing!

The second largest ethnic group is Malay Chinese, also known as Peranakan. Peranakan culture owes its special blend of Chinese and Malay traditions to the location and history of Malaysia.  In past centuries, China used Malaysia as a port for its shipments to Europe and India, therefore allowing for the melding of the two cultures. This created the Peranakan culture, which is known for its opulent architecture and unique dining customs.

Peranakan houses often feature a patio-like structure in the middle of the house, that allows for natural light to enter. It also allows pesky insects to enter so most beds in Peranakan homes use the clever mosquito nets to help facilitate a good night’s rest.  The picture below, of the Peranakan Museum, demonstrates the intricacies of Peranakan buildings.

Peranakan Museum

The third substantial ethnic group residing in Malaysia is Malaysian Indians, who are Hindu and speak Tamil. In addition to this group, there are many indiginous peoples that offer their unique customs to the overall landscape of Malaysia.

In terms of tourism, the popular places include Langkawi Island, with its conveiniently duty free shops and romantic resorts, and the Batu Steps, which boast of special festivals and a built-in cardio workout!

Potential tourists should be clued-in on one key fact:  during the day, Malaysia is very hot and humid.

As a result, the nights in Malaysia are filled with excitement!  Stalls open on the sides of the road and serve an array of all types of food at all hours, markets spring up all over town, and sell everything from bootleg CD’s to fresh produce. Talk about nightlife!

Sin Lee Loh ended the presentation with a video of one of the most entertaining aspects of Malaysia: lion dancing! Malaysia has been winning the top prize in lion dancing for many years, and it was easy to see why.  Below is a picture from an award-winning lion dance competition.

World Championship

With such compelling cutlure, who wouldn’t want to visit Malaysia?