(Article of periodic en Anglais - 2014)

Document title

(In)formal memoryscapes and the unma(s)king of a Malaysian war heroine

Authors(s) and Affiliation(s)


  • Cultural Geography, Univ., Wageningen, PAYS-BAS


This paper explores how and why the story of Sybil Kathigasu, a woman who played a salient role in the resistance movement against the Japanese during the Second World War in Perak, Malaysia, has been peripheralized within formal memory making even as it has been informally revived elsewhere. It suggests that, while the sidelining of her story may be the product of the tendency of the state of Perak to downplay its war past, Sybil's gender, race and political ideologies have also made it more difficult for her to be embraced as a ‘national’ heroine. Drawing on a private museum that was set up in her honor in Papan, the paper also reveals how factors impeding her formal remembrance also have implications for alternative efforts to recover her story. More broadly, it offers insights into women's absences in Malaysian public memory, and argues the need for more emphasis on memoryscapes ‘from below’ as a means of nuancing local remembrance politics


Article of periodic

published at : Singapore journal of tropical geography / ISSN 0129-7619 / CODEN SJTGD5

Editor : University of Singapore, Singapore - SINGAPOUR (1980)

Millesime : 2014, vol. 35, no3 [pp. 382-396]



INIST-CNRS, Cote INIST : 12443 A

Digital Object Identifier

Go to electronic document thanks to its DOI : doi:10.1111/sjtg.12077

Tous droits réservés © Prodig - Bibliographie Géographique Internationale (BGI), 2014
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