I have been gathering the impression that people seem to think that the entirety of Asia is made up of poor developing nations, that progress and modernity are limited to the west, and that real Asian culture can only exist in a traditional world.
Having been colonized, Malaysia’s culture has been influenced by outside cultures (one of the stronger influences being the west). This does not mean that one can say the culture is entirely western, despite the strong presence of mega malls and McDonald’s restaurants. Being in Kuala Lumpur, one might find them self feeling as though they never left home in the first place. In reality, anyone with this mentality is missing out on what is right in front of them.
One doesn’t need to leave the city for some distant primitive fishing village just to experience the culture of Malaysia. KL is full of diversity. The different people groups of Indians, Chinese, and Malay can be divided into even more intricate subgroups; from fashion choices to economic status, Malaysia is a conglomeration of cultures and individuals. There is not necessarily a ‘Malaysian identity’, with this in mind they seem to have a high value for their heritage, as well as a fearlessness to embrace the future.