Citra Malaysia: Celebrate Thriving Multiculturalism
Multiculturalism is thriving successfully in many parts of the world, and one country particularly proud of its cultural diversity is Malaysia.
Citra Malaysia began in 2009 in Brisbane to reveal Malaysian culture to the broader community and each year its size and scope has grown.
Malaysia draws on the varied cultures of its people. The first people to live in the area were the indigenous tribes that still remain, followed by the Malays who came from mainland Asia. Chinese and Indian cultural influences are heavily featured alongside Persian, Arabic and British cultures.
Nurul Amira Salehin is part of the Malaysian Students Council of Australia (MASCA), the group behind this event. She says it is important to promote multiculturalism to live in peace and respect each other’s way of life.
“There isn’t a right or wrong way to do something, we just have to respect the differences,” she says.
“In Malaysia, everyone lives well together in harmony, every race is celebrated and there is mutual respect. We want to share the cultural influences of our country and celebrate community and diversity together.”
Citra Malaysia features traditional arts including henna and batik painting, ketupat (rice packed in diamond shaped woven palm leaf) weaving and Chinese calligraphy. There will also be cultural performances and the chance to learn about the unique identities, traditions and histories that have been preserved for generations.
“This year there will be lots of hands-on activities as well as performances from all the main races of Malaysia. People don’t know about all the different things we do in Malaysia, they only know about our (great) food. We are trying to show that we are more than that,” says Amira.
Citra Malaysia 2016 will be held on the 10 September in Queen Street Mall. Stay up to date with event details here.
Amira says she loves everything about her culture, especially the food and is excited to be able to share it with the local Brisbane community.
“We really hope it will be a lasting platform in promoting multiculturalism. We wish to see a mix of people no matter their race, gender or cultural background – people coming together to celebrate our diverse expressions of humanity.”