Wong Phui Nam: Passing of a postcolonial literary pioneer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Wong Phui Nam, a trailblazer in Malaysian-Singaporean anglophone literature, passed away in his sleep on Monday, September 26, 2022. He was 87 years old.

Wong was introduced to the English language at the age of nine, and it proved to be perhaps the most significant experience in his life. It immediately captured the boy’s imagination by exposing him to westernculture, especially classical music. His love for western classical masters such as Mozart and Beethoven and the desire to emulate them drew him to the writing of poetry. He gravitated towards English because of its rich heritage and also because, being the child of a migrant in a largely Malay-speaking world, he did not consider any of the local
languages, including Cantonese, spoken at home, as his own...
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages2
JournalJournal of Postcolonial Writing
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Nov 2022


  • Wong Phui Nam
  • Malaysian literature
  • Postcolonial literature
  • Obituary


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