Sunday, January 3, 2010

Barry Wain's Malaysian Maverick

Barry Wain (2009) Malaysian Maverick: Mahathir Mohamad in Turbulent Times, New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan

Barry Wain is Writer-in-Residence at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore. He was a former editor of The Asian Wall Street Journal. An Australian, Wain has spent 37 years as a journalist in Asia.

The book blurb at the back cover,

The grandson of an Indian immigrant and the first Malay commoner to become prime minister of Malaysia, Mahathir Mohamad turned the Muslim-majority Southeast Asia country into one of the developing world's most successful economies. During his 22 years in power he adopted pragmatic economic policies alongside repressive political measures, and showed that Islam was compatible with representative government and modernization...But in mixing business and politics, Mahathir encouraged cronyism and failed to prevent the spread of corruption. Authoritative and impatient, he jailed opponents, sacked rivals and undermined institutions as he pursued his obsession with development...

This is an interesting book that is written by a journalist. His aim was to present and review ex Malaysian prime minister's term of office from the grassroot level.


  1. Saw it at Kinokuniya at Takashimaya yesterday. $49.99. I already spent $150 by then for books for my essay. If not would have bought a copy.

    Mahathir MUST be held accountable!

  2. Hi Sze Zeng,

    I will recommend you to read the book. It has some interesting perspectives.