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The inhabitants of the Malaysian state of Negeri Sembilan have long been of interest to outside observers. They are Muslims yet they have matrilineal clans, and both houses and land tend to be owned and inherited by women. In the face of British rule, modern market forces, and Islamic nationalism, the Malays of the Rembau district of Negeri Sembilan have succeeded in retaining many features of their matrilineality. Michael Peletz examines persistence and change in the social organization of these Malays in the period 1830 to 1980.
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