Economic Vision and Political Opposition in Malaysia, 1981-96, The Politics of the Mahathir

Khoo Boo Teik


This article approaches Malaysian politics from 1981 to 1996 in two ways.
First it reviews important political events so as to capture the critical issues
and political themes of four sub-periods of the 'Mahathir era'. Second, it
interprets the consequences of the political struggles of the entire period in
relation to major social and political developments in Malaysian society. For
the latter part, the article considers such socio-political trends as the
emergence of new political and bureaucratic alignments resulting from
Mahathir's modernizing, industrializing and privatizing agenda; the
centralization of executive power; authoritarianism; the formation of a
stateecapital alliance; and, the tensions felt in Mahathir's shift from the New
Economic Policy to Vision 2020.'

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Copenhagen Journal of Asian Studies
ISSN (print): 1395-4199, ISSN (online): 2246-2163

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