In Malaysia, every year is a year of festivals


Timing is everything, and for local writer Keith Hockton to have released his book, Festivals of Malaysia, this year, well, one might have thought he had insider knowledge.

Hockton’s book is a meticulously researched, 300-page, comprehensive catalogue of religious and secular festivals. This is a book most people will not read cover-to-cover, but rather will dip into when their curiosity is piqued on seeing a parade in the streets or hearing a particularly boisterous temple celebration. Others may use it to seek out and learn more about the lesser-known festivals that, as this book illustrates, are happening almost continuously in Malaysia. Like Hockton himself, they may have discovered that even some of those celebrating the festivals have only a hazy view of their origins and purpose.

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