Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Lawrence Ziring

Second Advisor

Dr. C. I. Eugene Kim

Third Advisor

Dr. Alan C. Isaak

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


This study investigates the need of a national language policy to promote political integration in a new nation, using Malaysia as an example. The thesis attempts to explain why Bahasa Malaysia was chosen as the national language and how its implementation as the prime language of political, social, and economic communication has contributed towards national political unity and stability in Malaysia. Three propositions are presented and investigated in support of the thesis.

The first proposition suggests that an acceptable national language helps foster political integration in a culturally pluralistic society. The primary objective would be to replace a specific ethnocultural orientation with a consciousness of the expanded nation.

The second proposition suggests that the most appropriate choice of a national language for Malaysia is the Malay language (Bahasa Malaysia).

The third proposition attempts to demonstrate that the use of Bahasa Malaysia contributes to political stability, and thereby promotes national unity.