Anti-Semitism in Contemporary Malaysia: Malay Nationalism, Philosemitism and Pro-Israel Expressions

Research output: Book/ReportBookpeer-review


Offering an empirical study into anti-Semitism and anti-Israel attitudes in Malaysia, this book examines the complicated nature and function of such beliefs within the contemporary context, mapping these discourses onto different ethnic and economic divisions. Based largely upon qualitative interviews with thirty Malaysian participants who detail their own experiences with and perceptions of this phenomenon, the project reveals how political actors and organizations in Malaysia achieve political success and maintain political power through investing in the Palestinian cause, simultaneously demonizing Israel and Jews to an astounding degree. However, the book also reveals how, in contrast to this state-led agenda, challenging anti-Semitism and pushing for dialogue with Israel has become a means by which progressive citizens can critique authorities and reassert their desire for a liberal and heterogenic Malaysia. The book therefore argues that both interest in and even support for Judaism and Israel may be more prominent than the official Malaysian position may suggest, with citizens holding far more complex opinions and views upon this subject matter.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages209
ISBN (Electronic)9789811360138
ISBN (Print)9789811360121
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Antisemitism in Malaysia
  • Palestinian Cause as a Form of Malay Muslim Identity
  • Promoting Ketuanan Melayu
  • Challenging Anti-Semitism and Liberal Politics in Malaysia
  • Antisemitism and Politics in Malaysia
  • Israel and South East Asian Politics
  • Malay Nationalism
  • Philosemitism and Pro-Israel Expressions


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