Current research students

Research Degree Students

Master of Arts (MA)

Naish Patrick Gawen
Thesis Title: 
Reading Realism in the Neoliberal Period
Abstract:
I aim to look at the work of scholars such as Walter Benjamin, György Lukács, Raymond Williams and Edward Said to examine how literary texts and literary criticism has been conceived of as a reaction to a mechanized, industrial capitalist society, and the influence of this conception in present-day literary criticism.
Supervisors: Associate Professor Andrew Ng Hock Soon (main supervisor) and Dr. Ali Alizadeh (external)

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PhD Arts

Krisha Raveendran Vishinpir
Thesis Title:
Crossing Boundaries:  A Negotiation of Islam by Refugee Women in Malaysia.
Abstract:
Recognising that a gendered perspective in migration/refugee studies is lacking within a Malaysian context, I intend to look into how Islamic conservatism is challenged by refugee women who arrive in Malaysia.
Supervisors: Associate Professor Sharon A Bong (main supervisor) and Dr Koh Sin Yee (associate supervisor)

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Hamza Delbar
Thesis Title:
Mauritius as a Developmental State
Abstract:
For this project, I intend to look at the Mauritian developmental case in order to understand how the small island developing state was able to leave behind the vast majority of African nations in the postcolonial era in terms of socio economics development paying particular attention to the literature on ‘developmental states’.
Supervisors: Dr. Joel D. Moore (main supervisor) & Professor Helen Nesadurai (associate supervisor)

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Cheah Wui Jia
Thesis Title:
(Un)broken faith - Doubt and Departure in the Fundamentalist Church of Malaysia
Abstract:
My research explore how doubt/trauma shape one’s sense of identity as an Evangelical Christian who stays or leaves the church. I look at how the Christian ‘stayer’ makes sense of doubt/trauma in light of their belief. I also examine how ‘leavers’ perceive their exiting journey and their previous believing selves.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Sharon A Bong (main supervisor) & Assoc Prof Yeoh Seng Guan (associate supervisor)

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Arath Nirmala Prabhakar
Thesis Title:
Movements, Moorings and Power: Differential Mobilities of Migrant Female Workers in Malaysia and Identity Construction
Abstract:
My research explores the differential mobilities of migrant female workers in Malaysia, to identify the organisation of power in society that influence these mobilities and identity construction, analysed via an intersectionality lens. Aspects of the mobilities paradigm underpin this study, particularly the recognition of movements and moorings within these mobility forms.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Yeoh Seng Guan (main supervisior) and Dr Koh Sin Yee (associate supervisor)

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Zahra Huseini
Thesis Title:
A Content Analysis of Pro-PTI Propaganda and Framing in Pakistani News Media from 2013-2018
Abstract:
The research aims to understand the claims of media partisanship in Pakistan and whether it can successfully shape the public discourse in favour of a political party. A content analysis of the coverage of current affairs on Pakistani news channels from 2013-2018, will be conducted to examine the media polarisation which is assumed to be in favour of PTI (The ruling political party of Pakistan). The theoretical framework will take the framing theory and Noam Chomsky’s propaganda model into consideration.
Supervisors: Dr. Tan Meng Yoe (main supervisor) and Assoc. Prof Marco Buente (associate supervisor)

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Vizla Kumaresan
Thesis Title:
Trans Men in Malaysia: Examining the psychological and decision making processes in becoming men
Abstract:
In this research, I will examine the processes by which trans men (who are socialised as girls/women/to be feminine as they are assigned female at birth) make decisions about which aspects of masculinity they want to portray. It will examine trans men's narratives to understand the decision making processes they utilise in becoming men. The research will assess the factors that determine how they weigh the different aspects of masculine identity and how this influences their portrayal of masculinity.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Sharon A. Bong (main supervisor) & Assoc. Prof Muhammad Kamruzzaman Mozumder (external)

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Tengku Zahaslan Bin Tuan Hashim
Thesis Title:
Intersection of Diplomacy and the Intellectual Property Rights in Malaysia
Abstract:
This research explores the significance of intellectual property rights in modern day diplomacy of developing countries by studying the Malaysian case. It attempts to identify the trends in using intellectual property as a diplomacy tool, and understand how developing countries like Malaysia engages in negotiations involving international intellectual property matters.
Supervisors: Dr. Joel D. Moore (main supervisor) & Professor Helen Nesadurai (associate supervisor)

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Mehvar Khan
Thesis Title:
Media and Political Attitudes in Malaysia: Fake news and its impact on the political opinions and attitudes of Malaysians
Abstract:
This research will plot a version of the model developed by Miller et.al. (2016) that will be customised for the Malaysian context. The original model looked at the interaction of individual's political ideology, knowledge and trust about politics as a predictor of conspiracy endorsement. Therefore, for this research my goal will be to develop measures of these variables that are relevant to the Malaysian context, to inductively find other unconsidered factors that may potentially be relevant in this context and to conduct a pilot test of modified model in Malaysia.
Supervisors: Dr. Joel D. Moore (main supervisor) &  Dr. Tan Meng Yoe (associate supervisor)

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Matthew Yap Tuck Mun
Thesis Title:
The Reality of TV: Identity, Authenticity and Personal Power within Reality TV based Science-Fiction
Abstract:  
This research will centre on Science Fiction texts that feature Reality Television programs – The Hunger Games are a prime example. I will be investigating how Science Fiction uses the mechanics of Reality TV to explore notions of identity formation, power relations between media producers, participants and viewers, as well as whether one can ever recover any semblance of authenticity in a sea of televised hyper-reality that saturates our screens. I am using Science Fiction because the genre holds a dark mirror up to society, and can be both informative and prophetic in its vision of our Reality TV obsessed world.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Andrew Ng Hock Soon (main supervisor) and Dr Jonathan Driskell (associate supervisor)

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Roy Chua Kwee Cheng
Thesis Title: 
The loss of capital in school consolidation
Abstract: 
My research will be a descriptive account of Singapore schools through sociological analysis. I will investigate the phenomenon of school mergers (or consolidation) through the narratives of Bourdieusian "players" in the "field" of education.  The thesis aims to be a prescriptive account to pause and reconsider the value of schools in urban policy planning.
Supervisors: Dr Yeoh Seng Guan (main supervisor) and Dr Tan Meng Yoe (associate supervisor)

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Satish Ranggayah
Thesis title:
Implications of the rohingya human trafficking issue to Malaysia's national security
Abstract:
Malaysian Muslim Malays are politically dominant and the majority; any status-quo change is viewed as national security threat. The Rohingya influx is a perceived threat to that status-quo. Hence, formulation of domestic and foreign policies on the Rohingya treatment must accommodate contradictory demands of the Malay stand and as a Muslim country.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Marco Buente (main supervisor) and Professor Helen Nesadurai (associate supervisor)

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Stephanie Tan Li Hsia
Thesis title:
Everyday Life in Practice: The Everyday as Identity, Resistance, and Tradition in Virginia Woolf
Abstract:
This research examines the cultural theory surrounding the everyday through Virginia Woolf, exploring how Woolf's work both emerges out of, and informs, existing theoretical models in rethinking and reshaping the everyday as a basis for radical praxis, in ways crucial to the production of forms of identity, resistance, and tradition.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Andrew Ng Hock Soon (main supervisor) and Dr Jonathan Driskell (associate supervisor)

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Adrian Yao Yong Tat
Thesis title:
Heutagogical learning of Malay as a foreign language in a flipped learning approach
Abstract: 
This study intends to explore heutagogical learning in learning of Malay as a foreign language by international students through the design, development and evaluation of instructional vodcasts in learning and its effectiveness of learning in a flipped learning environment.
Supervisors: Dr Joel D.Moore (main supervisor), Dr Melissa Wong (associate supervisor) and Dr Neethiahnanthan Ari Ragavan (external)

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Nadiah Ahmad
Thesis title:
Assessing the efficacy of gender mainstreaming policies
Abstract:
This research hopes to explore the efficacy of gender mainstreaming policies in addressing imbalances in gender relations, by examining the Kecamatan Development Program, also known as KDP, as a case study. The program involves a decentralized process of planning, budgeting and implementation in rural villages across Indonesia, with a special emphasis on women’s development.
Supervisors: Dr Joel D.Moore (main supervisor) and Professor Helen Nesadurai (associate supervisor)

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Laura Eva Wong
Thesis title:
Making Masculinity: Being “Butch” in Singapore
Abstract:
This piece of research seeks to investigate the experiences unique to masculine lesbians in Singapore, such as how they negotiate their identities in a country that is predominantly heteronormative, especially since their identities come with a form of visibility that feminine lesbians’ do not.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Sharon A Bong (main supervisor) and Dr Joseph Goh (associate supervisor)

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Lee Chee Leong
Thesis title:
China’s normative power in Southeast Asia and the role of multi-layered diplomacy
Abstract:
Set to examine the relationship between China's normative power and the role of Chinese multi-layered diplomacy in Southeast Asia, this project aims to construct an interactive model among the three variables — normative visions, sub-national engagements and cooperation outcomes — in construing Beijing's normative power projection towards its ASEAN neighbours. 
Supervisors: Professor Helen Nesadurai (main supervisor) and  Prof. Cheng-Chwee Kuik (external)

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Beh May Ting
Thesis title:
Space, Identity, and Foodscapes of Coffeehouses in Penang
Abstract:
This research aims to examine the longue durée of lifestyle change in traditional and contemporary spaces of food consumption and production. The research investigates discourses of space, identity, and food with a focus on the move from the first to the third wave of coffeehouses in Penang, Malaysia.
Supervisors: Dr Yeoh Seng Guan (main supervisor) and Associate Professor Khoo Gaik Cheng (external)

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Eugene Kee Hong
Thesis title:
Post-colonial contestation in Malaysian and Singaporean imaginations.
Abstract:
My research will focus on Malaysia and Singapore as young, independent, postcolonial nation-states, and how various literary and filmic texts seek to imagine, represent, negotiate, and contest ideas of the nation, just as the nation itself is conceived through the dominant political narrative of state policies and ideologies.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Andrew Ng Hock Soon and Professor Helen Nesadurai (associate supervisor)

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Jacqui Kong
Thesis title:
Serving up ethnicities: Chinese celebrity chefs and the search for identity
Abstract:
My research aims to analyse the ways in which Asian celebrity chefs conceptualise ethnicities in their activities of cooking and traveling, as well as the larger implications these hold for the representation and forming of Asian and Southeast Asian identities.
Supervisors: Associate Professor Andrew Ng Hock Soon (main supervisor) and Assoc. Prof Sharon A Bong (associate supervisor)
Publication:
Kong, J. (2011). Feasting with the 'Other': Transforming the Self in Food Adventuring Television Programs. Asian American Literature: Discourses and Pedagogies, 2, 45-56

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Abdullah Al Mahmud
Thesis title:
Decolonizing English Language Pedagogy: A postcolonial study of teaching-learning curriculum and praxis in Bangladesh and Malaysia.
Abstract:
The supremacy of English due to colonialism and globalization has had special impact on ELT in postcolonial countries. This study plans to examine extra-pedagogical aspects of English language teaching-learning of Bangladesh and Malaysia, and wants to propose multilingualism and a value-free, value-mixed or value-formed teaching-learning of English language and literature.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Andrew Ng Hock Soon (main supervisor) and Professor James Chin Ung Ho (associate supervisor)

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Claire Joyce Grant
Thesis title:
Modernist Authors and the Aesthetics of Space
Abstract:
The works of Virginia Woolf in respect to the built environment is the inspiration of my research.
The trajectory of Woolf's work stretches across the Modern literary era. The physical structures that contribute to Woolf’s unique stream of consciousness technique is the foundation of this inquiry; Spatial Perceptions, the Cityscape and Liminal Landscapes.
The research includes a special session on a Woolf conference, Woolf's legacy to Modern space and form, in and out of the Academic spectrum. Beyond the focus on urban and ethical issues, this research addresses the new structures in Woolf's work, a move that suggests new insights into Woolf as a "real world" social critic.
Supervisors: Assoc. Prof Andrew Ng Hock Soon (main supervisor) and Dr Christopher Worth (external)