Introduction In spite of the many early challenges and lingering difficulties faced by writers in the English language in Malaysia — challenges and difficulties of a political, literary and social nature — literary tradition in English in this newly emergent nation has come a long way, showing considerable dynamism and resilience since its inception. Critics suggest that the literarture in English in post-colonial societies generally evolves in three stages. In The Empire Writes Back: Theoiy and Practice in Post-Colonial Literatures, Bill Ashcroft, Gareth Griffiths and Helen Tiffin, for example, explain these three stages as: (i) ‘[works] produced by “representatives” of the imperial power’; (ii) ‘[works] produced “under imperial license” by “natives” or “outcastes” ’; and finally, (iii) the ‘development of independent literatures’ or the ‘emergence of modem post-colonial literatures’ (5-6).



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