PENANG PERNAKAN (BABAS & NYONAYAS) OR HAI KEE CHAN MANSION, MALAYSIA

PENANG PERNAKAN MANSION

The root word for Pernakan is anak, meaning children or descendants. Originally the term refereed to acculturated Chinese, intermarriage between Straits Chinese and local Malay, or they are Chinese, Malay and colonial British mix. Their language is creole; in Malacca, perhaps more Malay words than Hokkien, a Chinese dialect. In modern times, the dominant politicians used the term to refer to all Chinese as aliens, in a racial context, without understanding of their own anthropological background. Delusion can be a blessing for the frog living in a small well. You will be surprised by the opulence. Yet we must not forget that many Chinese then and now live in relative poverty. Hai Kee Chan belonged to the comprador class. A butterfly cannot see beyond that, or refuse to see beyond. Multiculturalism can survive well for tourism only.

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