By J. Fischer
In The Halal Frontier Johan Fischer exhibits that halal (literally lawful or accepted) is not any longer an expression of esoteric kinds of construction, alternate and intake, yet a part of an increasing globalised industry. This e-book explores sleek sorts of halal knowing and perform within the halal intake of middle-class Malays within the diaspora.
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Extra resources for The Halal Frontier: Muslim Consumers in a Globalized Market
An example of the way in which diaspora is contested within the political field surfaced in a newspaper article in The Star dated May 13, 2006. ” Many Malays in London are students (as we shall see many of my informants are students), and they are supported by the Malaysian state, and thus, the above debate was important for them as a diasporic group. Hence, the social formation of diaspora often “is best understood as composed of those who passionately share the conflicts that divide it about the nature of their local, national, and transnational commitments and identities” (Tölölyan 2000: 111).
From my fourteenth-floor condominium balcony in a middle-class suburb about 15 kilometers west of Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur, I had two quite distinct views beneath me: to one side my fieldwork site and to the other side a view over the lush and “rural” greenery of Sungai Penchala. Sungai Penchala had the status of a Malay reserve, meaning that formally only Malays could buy land in this area. Sungai Penchala was also the home of the commune of Darul Arqam (the group has now dispersed and a highway runs through the area).
Established in 1971, Arqam developed into a commune comprising about 40 houses on eight acres of land. The group set up its own surau (prayer house), medical clinic, school, and a number of workshops. Arqam cultivated and marketed an Islamic vision of Malay independence and prosperity through the production of a wide range of halal food products. Ideally, this vision was to ensure the group full independence from any kind of non-Muslim control. Arqam successfully promoted this vision of communal self-sufficiency, and their halal goods were traded throughout peninsular Malaysia.