Mereka Utusan: Imprinting Malay Modernity 1920s - 1960s
  • Gallery 1 & 2
  • 16 Oct 2016 - 25 Jun 2017
  • 10.00am - 6.00pm
  • Free

Mereka Utusan: Imprinting Malay Modernity

1920s – 1960s

16 October 2016 – 25 June 2017
Galleries 1 and 2



1. The act of creation


1. A news item
2. A group of messengers


Download the Gallery Guide (English) here.

Download the Gallery Guide (Malay) here.


Mereka Utusan presents insights into the development of Malay modernity and identity through the language of advertisements and editorial cartoons produced during the 1920s – 1960s. Through these features, Malay modernity and identity were simultaneously imagined and discussed in colonial Malaya and Singapore amidst important historical developments in the 20th century.The 1920s witnessed the growth of Malay publishing houses throughout the Straits Settlements. Whilst the history of Malay printing is intertwined with the production of religious texts, the 20th century saw publishing play a more central role in politics, commerce and entertainment within the Straits Settlements and the Malay peninsula. This is perhaps most evident in the field of politics where newspapers and magazines gained momentum from various nationalist movements in the 1920s and invigorated Malay communities through widespread coverage and commentary on  these events.

Newspapers and magazines therefore created (mereka) a space for the coverage and development of such news items. In doing so, they sought to cultivate a modern generation of readers, writers and consumers (utusan).



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Author: MHC Admin
Last Modified: 13 Mar 2017