…are everywhere here in Melaka, collecting pieces of their past. In the Dutch case, retracing their colonial adventures, and in the Chinese case, tracing a certain diaspora. The Dutch are mostly Dutch. The Chinese are a mix of Chinese Chinese and Malaysian ethnic Chinese. James, the (ethnic Chinese btw) guy I had a fascinating conversation with a few days ago about Malaysian politics, told me bluntly that the Chinese are the Jews of Malaysia. What he meant was that they are viewed in much the same ways that Jews are in other countries. Hard working and industrious merchants who value education on the positive stereotype side. Money-grubbing people who have way too much influence and control over resources on the negative side. Every culture seems to need to fill this particular scape-goat niche. Every culture seems to need an enemy, real or imagined.
Anyway, on to Melaka. It has a wonderful feel to it, the mix of architectural influences here are quite something to see. Click on the pic below to go to the whole album.