Interlok: Sex scene, rape scenes, suicide by hanging

On page 202 in the unabridged version of Interlok, there is the scene showing Kim Lock (father to the main Chinese character Cing Huat) “mengadakan hubungan jenis” with his mistress Mei Hua, a prostitute, after both get high on opium — as is the custom of their loveless sexual union.

Cing Huat’s wife later finds Mei Hua’s body hanging from the jamban (outhouse toilet): …

“Dan, alangkah terperanjatnya lagi demi dia melihat orang tergantung dalamnya dengan lidah terjelir keluar”

and needless to say, the shocked woman starts screaming hysterically at the gruesome sight. Mei Hua’s suicide is described on page 218.

On pages 337-8, there is the scene of the bad guy Suppiah raping Malini, wife of the main Indian character Maniam. She struggles, her sari is torn. Her coli is torn. His hands grope her breasts.

Our translation: “By then, Malini could not resist any longer. It has been three years since (her husband) Maniam left her. She was still young and when the secret places were aroused, she no longer had the willpower to fight (her body’s urges) anymore. She knew it was wrong, but how could she summon the strength to fight. Suppiah’s burly torso was not only a weapon to defeat her resistance but also the tool to weaken her will.”

Malini hangs herself from a belimbing tree in shame when she becomes pregnant as a result of the rape.

In the student edition, Malini dies in bed from fever.

There are several editions of Interlok. The student edition was first printed in 2010 and copyrighted to Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka.

Earlier editions in 1971, 1973 and a reprint in 1996 (the year Abdullah Hussain got his Tokoh Sastera award) are copyrighted to the author.

On pages 457-8, a lecherous old communist guerrilla Teck Hock attempts to rape P0h Eng, Cing Huat’s daughter. It’s described how he pins her down and embraces her.

“Teck Hock was on top of her body.”

“Are you mad? screamed Poh Eng. “Gua anggap lu seperti gua punya bapa.”

“I’m not your father,” he replied. “I’m just an ordinary man …”.

Both rape scenes have been taken out from the student edition.

.
Is this sick book suitable for school?
.

There are many unappropriate elements in the book, so much so that the original had to be filtered (edited by Ruziati binti Abdul Rani and Baharin bin Ayob) and condensed to something like a hundred pages shorter for student reading.

If the censors had done such a thorough job of removing the paragraphs depicting sex, suicide and the violence, why did they leave the racist bits intact?!

Is a novel that has to be tampered with so much really a piece of outstanding literature for 16-year-olds to study for a major exam?

So much for Gapena’s (Malay writers association) posturing that not a single word in the novel can be allowed to be changed despite complaints by the Indians.

Hullo, the 503-page original book has already been truncated to 418 pages for its student edition.

The fact that the Interlok was butchered in length goes to show that Gapena — defending the book’s “freedom of expression” and insisting it can’t be touched — are nothing more than spindoctors.

There is a prawn behind the rock (udang sebalik batu) for this book’s selection as compulsory study.

UPDATED, Hartal Interlok series

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Comments
10 Responses to “Interlok: Sex scene, rape scenes, suicide by hanging”
  1. telur dua says:

    They are trying to bungkus shit and sell it as nasi lemak. Maybe they should eat it first.

  2. Paul Warren says:

    Hey, you left out the part where the Malay protagonist sets about to rape his daughter!! Or is that a contemporary setting that has come about because of Valentine’s Day? Or maybe the story about the old widow who sets about to entrap the young Malay man into marriage with her by compromising him into a Khalwat situation with the raiding Uztaz offering the choice of either marrying her or being charged for khalwat? Or is that a story that my dad told me about how his best friend married his wife all those years ago? Surely the story telly is going to be telling some story about the Malays who live near the Indian and Chinese characters….eh.

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Hartal MSM:
    Paul, the Malay characters in the book are all good. The villains (Suppiah, Paman Kok Leng, Cing Huat, Teck Hock) are only to be found among the Chinese and the Indians. We kid you not.

  3. Such unworthy ‘literature’. This is the product of a tokoh sastera? omg- he’s definitely a closet perv. Approved by Education Ministry pulak (please jaga the race relations ok?). There is definitely a prawn behind the meehoon.

  4. harimau malaya says:

    if like this interlok book better ban it,its not only playing racial issue,moral values also.in school should teach good values and morals,students decide themselves what to choose.i study literature in secondary school 20 years ago but no such issue.Sastera stories have good moral values,malay language richness not like this interlok shit

  5. BEFREE says:

    Which country in the world would use a racist book viz ” INTERLOK ” as literature reading material in secondary school where the children’s minds are so tender and innocent.

    Is our Education Minister so insensitve as to force-feed rubbish into our next generation ?
    Is he telling us there are no other literaturs books around that can help in nation building ?

    Not too late to withdraw ” INTERLOK ” before Malaysia become the laughing stock.

  6. Ribbon Ooi says:

    Who can be sure what effect Interlok will have on students? Why should everyone think it’s for the worst? If you read literature books, sexual connotation/description is not so rare. Why shouldn’t we educate the students about sex to avoid unwanted babies? The more you hide, the more they feel the thrills of it. It depends on which approach and angle the students are taught to look at the book. The situations described in the book could happen in the era when the book was written, but does that mean every Chinese, Indian or Malay is like the characters portrayed? That belief is delusional and could only come from ignorant mind. Wake up people, it’s a book with literary values. You can read a lot of literature books from all over the world writing about terrible things people did regardless of their origin/race/ethnic. But it is truth and we all should know the truth to learn about life.

  7. tarmo says:

    the person worte this book and those support this stupid book ,they had no love feeling in their heart to help the people

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  1. [...] not overtly racist, but still highly unsavoury material totally unsuitable for school students: “Dan, alangkah terperanjatnya lagi demi dia melihat orang [...]

  2. [...] case) by their neighbour. Meanwhile, Maniam’s second wife, whom he abandoned, is described as responding sexuallyto her rapist who happens to be the mortal enemy of her [...]



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