THE MALAYSIAN CHINESE A STORY OF PRESERVING IDENTITY
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The Malay Peninsula was one of the primary destinations for Chinese emigration over the centuries - the first immigrants arrived there over two thousands years ago. Over the years, the groups of Huaqiao gradually expanded into major settlements, playing an important role both in the history and in the economy of the country. Nowadays Malaysia has the second largest Chinese community in South-East Asia. However, the Huaqiao did not undergo a full process of assimilation and still preserve their cultural identity. One goal of this paper is to present the historical background of the relations between the Chinese immigrants and the indigenous population in Malaysia, while another is to analyse the present situation of the Huaqiao.
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