This Book Has Sexual Content And It’s Now A Compulsory Read For Form 4 Students

Concerned members of the society are questioning why the ministry selected this novel to be part of the Bahasa Malaysia literature component.

  • The past few decades have seen Malaysians complaining about the questionable state of the local education system, with many concerned about the lack of substance in the syllabus

    • Recently, a large group young local doctors quit their medical profession over their inability to properly communicate in English, despite the fact that the education system requires students to learn the global language for a good 11 years, in both primary and secondary school.

      Lack of importance to the English language and standards of the syllabus have been questioned many times in the past, with the Education ministry constantly assuring that with every new education blueprint, solid changes are being made to improve the system.

  • In the latest argument against the education system, a shelter for pregnant teens have expressed disappointment over a compulsory read for Form Four students, "Pantai Kasih", claiming that it has inappropriate sexual contents

      Pantai Kasih novel by author Azmah Nordin Image via Malaysiakini

      Pantai Kasih novel by author Azmah Nordin

    • “We feel it is unreasonable that ‘Pantai Kasih’, which has lewd elements, is used as a secondary school textbook,” Petubuhan Kebajikan Darul Wardah (Darwa) chairperson Hazlina Abd Razak said.

      “We assist teenagers who fall pregnant out of wedlock at the Darul Wardah Selangor shelter and rehabilitation centre.

      Hazlina said the teens Darwa counsels say that they learn of sex at school from their peers or through watching pornographic videos on their mobile telephones at the back of the classroom, when the teacher is not in.
  • "Pantai Kasih" tells the story of a group of wealthy doctors and the trials and tribulations they face while working at a local private hospital

      Page 56 of the Pantai Kasih novel, detailing the excerpt about the sexual encounter Image via Wee Hing Thong

      Page 56 of the Pantai Kasih novel, detailing the excerpt about the sexual encounter

    • The novel's main character, Dr Raiha is described as a passionate, young, intelligent doctor who is battling the demons of her past and the sudden loss of her young daughter.

      While for most part of the novel, the story just revolves around the struggles of the main characters, there is an excerpt describing a passionate "sexual" encounter between the leading lady and her husband.

    • The much debated, translated version of the excerpt reads:

      “Raiha became the victim of his rapacity. It was unplanned and without Raiha’s permission, that special genetic cell belonging to Dr Sadiz entered Raiha’s body.

      “Dr Sadiz continued in his glee, completing an "autopsy" on Raiha’s body, trapped on the lift floor,” a translation of the excerpt of the Bahasa Malaysia novel reads.
  • According to Hazlina, the teenagers at Darwa claim that students usually learn about sex by watching pornographic videos with their peers in class, in the absence of teachers

    • So having books that allude to sexual relations as part of the syllabus does not help, and should be retracted from the syllabus, she said.

      “Education should set us on the right path. We urge the selection panel to be more careful and aware of their responsibilities,” Hazlina added.
  • However, Parent Action Group for Education (Page) chairperson Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim thinks that the novel could be an effective way to educate students on sex and dealing with such taboo issues

      Page chairman Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim

    • Noor Azimah said teenagers today were already facing such situations in their own lives.

      Introducing such novels would make it easier for teenagers to discuss such topics with their teachers and for teachers to educate them on this, she said.

      “Such a novel is suitable because many at that age are falling in love,” Noor Azimah told Malaysiakini.
  • Meanwhile, local author Raiha Bahaudin urged the education ministry to be more selective with the kind of content they use in school syllabus and to not promote books that portray women in a bad light

      Author Raiha Bahaudin

    • Speaking against such "lewd" romance novels, Raiha noted that there are one too many books like in the market and that most of the authors are women.

      “Maybe some will say I feel slighted because the main character in that steamy scene shares my name. Maybe. But please. Be more judicious in your writing.

      “The fact is, those who write such stories that place women in demeaning positions are mostly women themselves,” said Raiha in an open letter, signing off as a "worried mother and writer", as reported by Malaysiakini.

  • Raiha stressed that there are other ways to encourage school students to read more, suggesting books like "The Hunger Games" and "The Maze Runner" that promotes the power of determination and fighting against corruption

      Dystopian novel, The Hunger Games Image via Tumblr

      Dystopian novel, The Hunger Games

    • Even if the intention is to use pop fiction to attract young readers, quality should not be compromised, she said.

      “This is not a battle between literature and pop fiction, and we know that not all literary works are suitable for children, and vice-versa.
  • Comparing "Pantai Kasih" with "Sing to The Dawn", the literature component for Form 5 English about the struggles between farmers and capitalists, teacher, Faeiz Ali lamented about the worsening quality of Malay writing in the country

      Faeiz Ali's Facebook status about the Pantai Kasih novel Image via Sukar Star TV

      Faeiz Ali's Facebook status about the Pantai Kasih novel

    • According to Faeiz in his Facebook post, the novel narrates the lives of doctors and nurses serving Datuks, Datins and the elite. It also talks about the luxury cars they drive.

      “In the story, there are doctors who ride Porches, Volvo 960s. Some live in condominiums that are like hotels. There are horny doctors who flirt with nurses.There are doctors who are psycho and arrogant. Some are psychopaths and delusional. Some doctors are having a love affair with doctors. Some want to have a love affair with nurses.

      “I don’t know how a novel like this can be in our education syllabus. Just look at the quality of Bahasa writing lately. It is very sad," added the young teacher.
  • Despite the government's assurance on improving the syllabus, Malaysians have been up in arms about the deteriorating standards of local students:

  • Last November, more than a 1,000 medical graduates quit their medical profession due to a lack of proficiency in English:

  • Eager to bring about positive change, PEMANDU ran a survey last year on the importance of English language in schools:

  • Holding up their end of the bargain, the government informed on 2 November 2015 that they will be organising free English classes for adults starting this year:

Most-read stories today

Leave a comment