Building a Malaysian Community Online: An Analysis of <i>That Effing Show</i> and Online Responses to It


  • Susan Philip, University of Malaya, Malaysia


Upon achieving independence in 1957, Malaysia became a sovereign political entity. Now, fifty-seven years later, there is still uncertainty as to whether the state has developed into a nation. I question the extent to which all Malaysians are allowed to be part of a larger, national community within the politically-constructed framework of the state. For politically-expedient reasons, citizens are constructed as being fundamentally different from each other, and these differences have had a deep and damaging effect on their perceptions of their place, and the place of others, within the social framework. This has been compounded by the lack of space for open discussion of these issues. I wish to argue in this paper that the growth of the Internet and the burgeoning of social media have created a space within which a broader and more inclusive sense of community can be considered, examined and argued about, thus perhaps being allowed to grow and develop further. In order to examine this subject, I will be analysing a popular Malaysian web show called That Effing Show, which comments on Malaysian politics and society. What makes That Effing Show worth taking a closer look at, is the fact that it is disseminated via the internet, and is easily accessible on YouTube. The medium allows for immediate and visible responses from viewers. It is, therefore, a far more dialogical medium than traditional print media. This paper will analyse both the content of the shows and the responses generated in the comments section.


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Author Biography

Susan Philip, University of Malaya, Malaysia

Susan Philip is an Associate Professor in the English Department of the Faculty of Arts, University of Malaya. She has done research on the English-language theatres of Malaysia and Singapore, and has had several articles and chapters published on this subject. Currently, her interest lies more in crime fiction and in alternative spaces of expression. She has, therefore, begun to venture into research in these areas.




How to Cite

Philip, University of Malaya, Malaysia, S. (2015). Building a Malaysian Community Online: An Analysis of &lt;i&gt;That Effing Show&lt;/i&gt; and Online Responses to It. Asiatic: IIUM Journal of English Language and Literature, 9(2), 41–59. Retrieved from




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