An indigenous view of social justice leadership in the Malaysian education system

Suria Angit, Adrian Jarvis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Social justice leadership (SJL) is a much-vouched method of building greater inclusivity in a variety of fields, education being prominent among them. This article considers how SJL can improve educational opportunities for one of the world’s more deprived and marginalised communities, the Orang Asli (which translates as ‘the original people’ and is the collective name for the Indigenous people of peninsular Malaysia). It explores the concepts of social justice and SJL, arguing that they are useful, but, in focusing on the relationship between the individual and the collective, do not always fully appreciate the epistemological bases of the concepts, thus missing their true import for Orang Asli people. Practical examples of how Orang Asli people suffer in educational settings are given, the emphasis being on underachievement and bullying. Finally, the stands are tied together with a discussion of how SJL can be of benefit, the onus being on how social justice leaders need to be cognisant of Orang Asli culture and forms of knowledge before serious progress can be made.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 9 Nov 2023

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