University of Nottingham Malaysia

Voices II

'Media, Politics and Identity in Contemporary South-East Asia'

The second series, entitled 'Media, Politics and Identity in Contemporary South-East Asia', explored the changing place of media in the construction of identity and its implications in contemporary society.

What does it mean, today, to belong to a nation? What are the implications of media on tensions, conflicts and the sense of identity and belonging? Increasingly, there is a need (particularly in this region) to understand what it means for people to forge identities in rapidly changing national, social and cultural contexts, and to question the role of media in such efforts.

The series took place alongside significant struggles in Asia with escalating racial and religious inequalities, freedom of speech, social justice, political reform, and the upholding of human rights. Rising trends of citizen journalism, independent filmmaking, and the use of social media networking have changed the place and role of media especially in the construction of cultural and national identities in contemporary society. It is also useful to examine the politics of various media forms, and how cultural products are used to articulate and legitimate competing ideological agendas.

Five eminent speakers consisting intellectuals and independent media producers/activists from the region addressed issues of media reform, social justice and democracy within the context of social, cultural and political transformations. They included people who are seriously concerned about freedom and human rights, who are committed to opening up alternative spaces for such freedom, and who are working passionately within such spaces. 

This series also focused on the growing concern with text, images and narratives of media and popular culture and the controversial ways in which the subaltern in society (women, youth and the Orang Asli, among others) are (re)presented through various modes of media production amidst intense surveillance, censorship, draconic laws and institutional control. Speakers included Alberto Gomes, Jacqueline Ann Surin, Anil Netto, Chua Beng Huat, and Wan Zawawi Ibrahim.

You can download the brochure (pdf) from the series to find out more.


School of Media, Languages and Cultures

University of Nottingham Malaysia
Jalan Broga, 43500 Semenyih
Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

telephone: +6 (03) 8924 8693
fax: +6 (03) 8924 8020

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