Nature and Nation

Forests and Development in Peninsular Malaysia

by Jeyamalar Kathirithamby-Wells

526 pp., illustrated
Man and Nature in Asia # 9
Available from NIAS Press worldwide except North America

Hardback - 2005, Available
ISBN 978 87 91114 22 9, £65.00
Paperback - 2005, Available
ISBN 978 87 91114 49 6, £19.99

• Ground-breaking, in-depth history of forestry and forest politics in peninsular Malaysia.
• Essential reference for anyone working on the subject.

This book explores the relations between people and forests in Peninsular Malaysia where the planet’s richest terrestrial eco-system met head-on with the fastest pace of economic transformation experienced in the tropical world. It engages the interplay of history, culture, science, economics and politics to provide a holistic interpretation of the continuing relevance of forests to state and society in the moist tropics.

Malaysia has long been singled out for emulation by developing nations, an accolade contradicted in recent years by concerns over its capital-, rather than poverty-driven forest depletion. The Malaysian case supports the call for re-appraisal of entrenched prescriptions for development that go beyond material needs.

“The author’s work makes a major contribution to the forest history of Peninsular Malaysia and … it will long be regarded as a ground-breaking and seminal study that no one with an interest in the environmental history of the region can afford not to read. Nothing remotely like it exists for the Peninsular and I know of no other comparable work on any other part of the Tropics. It is sui generis.” (External reader).

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    Carol Ann Boshier's book 'Mapping Cultural Nationalism: The Scholars of the Burma Research Society,1910-1935' has been shortlisted for the EuroSEAS Humanities Book Prize 2019. Congratulations!

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