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Happy 2019! 🎆🎉We have important updates for you. 📅

Happy New Year, everyone! Time really does fly by quickly. Where did 2018 go?? We apologize for being a little quiet lately.😅 We have been working pretty hard on some major stuff to make 2019 a very fulfilling year for Imagined Malaysia.

Here are some super important highlights that we want to share with our supporters. After all, it is because of YOU that 2018 allowed Imagined Malaysia to keep going. Check it out!

1. We have reached our fundraising target!💰Imagined Malaysia Review is coming to you this January.👏

Thanks to your continuous support through your donations, Imagined Malaysia successfully collected a total of RM 2,469 to print the first edition of our review. The editorial team has been working around the clock to finalize the content and design to be submitted for printing in the next couple of weeks.

We will be organizing a soft launch as well as an open meeting for the second issue. Thank you for making this dream of ours come true, friends and followers! Stay tuned on our Facebook page for details on the launch and meeting. 

 2. Meet our new crew members! 👯‍♂️🤝💞 

Guess what? The team has expanded. We are so happy to welcome Samuel Phang and Nas Addina into our close-knit group of history nerds. Thanks to the both of them, Imagined Malaysia is now on our way to becoming more sophisticated and equipped with the necessary technical skills that would enhance our work.

On one hand, Samuel, a.k.a. Sam is now our Digital Trainer and Web Manager. He is currently developing our main website. Thanks to Sam, Imagined Malaysia has received a grant from TechSoup, which will be covering the costs of acquiring the necessary software and other digital tools to improve our capacity as a nonprofit organization.

 On the other hand, Addina has unleashed her immense talent through producing brilliant graphics for our social media marketing. She is also the creative editor of the upcoming IM Review. Not only is Addina blessed with artistic skills, she also has tremendous leadership skills and enthusiasm to share the power of historical knowledge to her peers.

We are so grateful to have Sam and Addina on board!

3. We were on TV!📺📸

‘Let’s Talk with Sharaad Kuttan’ is a one-hour programme that dissects and takes a deeper look into news, stories and current issues that matter, featuring opinion leaders, top personalities, and experts. Sharaad discusses on a multitude of topics for a greater understanding, and better comprehension of the subject matter. 

We are eternally grateful to Sharaad for having Jeremy, Netusha and Imran to speak about the origins of our organization and share our aspirations for learning Malaysian history. If you have not watched the interview, you can find the full recording here.

4. Our Facebook page has reached 4,000 likes.🤩👍

A huge milestone for the team, and we cannot thank you enough.

5. We went to our first international conference (in Sarawak)!✈️🏛️

The 8th General Conference of the Asia-Europe Museum Network (ASEMUS) titled “New Curatorial Perspectives for a Changed World”, was hosted by the Sarawak Museum and held at the Waterfront Hotel in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia, between 14 and 16 November 2018.

Over 3 days, participants from across Asia and Europe took part in workshops, masterclasses, panels and case study presentations. The last day will be dedicated to the discovery of the cultural and natural heritage of Sarawak and Borneo. This was highly important for Imagined Malaysia as it would allow us to make new friends in Borneo and explore potential themes for collaborations that go beyond where we are generally concentrated – that implying that we are aware that we tend to still be trapped within the confines of 1957 Malaysian bondages.

 Netusha took it upon herself to go find out the fascinating developments happening in the heritage scene in Kuching, Sarawak. Thanks to one of our patrons, she also managed to catch up with Jason Brooke,  grandson of the last ruling Rajah Muda of Sarawak who runs the Brooke Gallery at Fort Magherita 

The central topic addressed by the 8th ASEMUS General Conference looked at the on-going changes in the role of curators in the light of dramatic changes in the landscape within which museums operate. The world is becoming increasingly fractured and divided across nationalistic and ideological lines. Audiences have become more sophisticated and demanding. Technology, in particular, digital technologies, have revolutionised the delivery of knowledge and content to end users. In the meantime, issues of ethics and provenance have become more pertinent than ever before in museological practice. 

The role and relevance of the museum and the curator in contemporary society is shifting in light of these changes. An international line-up of speakers from European and Asian museums presented perspectives, experiences and best practices on the ground, offering conference participants practical insights into how their museums can respond and adapt. 

6. Two of our crew members are going to be published authors!🤯😍 

Oh yes, we are not kidding about this!!!

The tentative title of the book is ‘Race in the Colonial Wars of 19th century Southeast Asia’ and here is a summary:

The colonization of Southeast Asia was a long and violent process where numerous military campaigns were waged by the colonial powers across the region. The notion of racial difference was crucial in many of these wars, as native Southeast Asian societies were often framed in negative terms as ‘savage’ and ‘backward’ communities that needed to be subdued and ‘civilized’. This collection of critical essays focuses on the colonial construction of race and looks at how the colonial wars in 19th century Southeast Asia were rationalized via recourse to theories of racial difference, making race a factor in the wars of Empire. Looking at the colonial wars in Java, Borneo, Indochina, Philippines and other parts of Southeast Asia, the essays examine the manner in which the idea of racial difference was weaponized by the colonizing powers and how forms of local resistance often worked through/against such colonial structures of identity. 

Edited by Farish A. Noor and Peter Carey, the contributors include Mesrob Vartavarian, David Malitz, Brian Schott, Netusha Naidu and Yvonne Tan (gurl power yo). The book is due to be published mid-2019 by Amsterdam University Press.

7.  Some of us were, all in a way, involved in “509: The People Have Spoken” but in our own capacity… yeah.😏😁 

The book  is an anthology of essays recording debates and discourses that took place in the lead up to the 14th General Elections, the historic election that saw a change in power for the first time after more than half a century since Malaysia’s Independence. We have put together prominent scholars and public figures; Hishamuddin Rais, Chin Huat, Syed Farid Alatas, Hew Wai Weng, Tricia Yeoh, Faisal Tehrani, Netusha Naidu (whaddup uols!), and many others!

Even though this is not formally a project by Imagined Malaysia, quite a significant number of our members were involved in making this anthology a reality. Jeremy, Yvonne and Imran were the main editors of the book. Netusha was invited to moderate the panel discussion that took place in conjunction with the book launch as well.

The book ‘509: The People Have Spoken’, is available in three languages; Chinese, English, and Malay, is now available in Gerakbudaya bookstore! You can also make an online purchase via these two links: https://bit.ly/2BM8i8V (Malay edition) and https://bit.ly/2Sr59Rs (english). 

FIN! We hope that you feel Imagined Malaysia has accomplished some important things last year. We look forward to doing more exciting work in 2019. None of this would be possible if it were not for the support of our patrons and followers. We simply cannot thank you enough. Stay tuned to more awesome updates coming your way!