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Book Review: Penang - Rites of Belonging in a Malaysian Chinese Community

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Penang - Rites of Belonging in a Malaysian Chinese Community (27 December, 2013)
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Penang - Rites of Belonging in a Malaysian Chinese Community is a book by symbolic anthropologist Dr Jean DeBernardi. As the title of this book suggests, it offers insights into the religious practises of the Chinese in Penang. However, the reason I got this book was because I wanted to hear Dr DeBernardi's views on the history of the Penang Chinese. Although she covers this in passing, it helps provide alignment to my hypothesis on the arrivals of the Chinese in this country.

I crossed paths with Dr DeBernardi many years ago, when I was researching the history of the church I attend. Dr DeBernardi was helpful in providing me useful information from her research, helping me piece together how my church got its early start in 19th century Penang. I was quite excited to see her book on the rites of the local Chinese and naturally picked up this book. It sat on my little bookshelf for months, maybe even a year or so, before I opened it.


Title: Penang - Rites of Belonging in a Malaysian Chinese Community
Author: Jean DeBernardi
ISBN: 978-9971-69-416-6
Publisher: NUS Press, National University of Singapore
Year of First Publication: 2004 (Stanford University Press)

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