22 Dec 2011

‘Konserto’ Stages Comeback

PETALING JAYA: The novel Konserto Terakhir by national laureate Datuk Abdullah Hussain will replace Interlok as a literature text for the Bahasa Malaysia subject in Form Five next year.

Konserto Terakhir had previously been used as a textbook for Form Five students in Zone Two from 2000 to 2010.

Kavyan Writers Group president Uthaya Sankar SB said he was pleased with the move, adding that the group had no issue with the novel or its author.

“Our stand from day one was that either all the recommended amendments are made (to the student edition of the novel) or the novel be withdrawn completely.

“But the reprinted novels [Interlok Kulit Biru] only contained about 20% of the amendments we had suggested,” he said. [READ MORE]

On Wednesday, Bernama quoted Education director-general Datuk Seri Abdul Ghafar Mahmud as saying that Konserto Terakhir had undergone a selection process and was deemed suitable for secondary school students.

The report added that the replacement involved schools in Zone Two, which covers Negri Sembilan, Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Selangor.

This followed the Cabinet's decision on Dec 14 to drop Interlok from next year.

Interlok was made a compulsory text for the literature component of the Bahasa Malaysia subject for Form Five students this year but certain quarters claimed that the book contained material that was offensive to the Indian community.

In March, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced in Parliament that parts of the novel that were considered offensive by the Indian community would either be changed or substituted with more acceptable terms.

(The Star, 22 December 2011)