Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1-1994

Abstract

George Perkins Marsh has successfully highlighted the importance of the subjective in "seeing". Without precisely labelling the process as a "cognitive" one, Marsh nevertheless recognised that people's perceptions and evaluations are significant filters in the understanding of any social "reality". In the same vein, Gailey (1982:ix) has also pointed out that people are not "mere reflections of a period. They impose their own order and vision upon their times". In this paper, we will focus specifically on this cognitive element; in particular, we have chosen two people of similar sex, nationality and professions, working in Malaya in the same period, to discuss the importance of their cognitive capacities in providing both similar and dissimilar perceptions of a country and its people. We will discuss Sir Hugh Clifford (1866-1941) and Sir Frank Swettenham (1851-1946), early British Residents in Malaya, to highlight their historical perceptions of Malaya during the colonial period (Figure 1) as evident in their writings and to discuss the influences on these perceptions.

Discipline

Asian Studies | Human Geography

Research Areas

Humanities

Publication

Asian Profile

Volume

22

Issue

4

First Page

295

Last Page

309

ISSN

0304-8675

Publisher

Asian Research Service

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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