For this final project, I interview a foreigner from Malaysia. Her name is Fathin Hanina or commonly called Nina, and now she is studying in International Medical Faculty of Hasanuddin University. I met her at Wednesday, May 11th, 2011 in the front garden of Medical Faculty of Hasanuddin University. After chit-chat for a moment, I gave her 3 questions, that I have to ask her, about cross-cultural marriage in her country, Malaysia. She said that in Malaysia there was a lot of cross-cultural marriage, both among religions and among racial/ethnic groups.
According to Nina, some potential difficulties of a cross-cultural marriage in her country are religious differences and racial/ethnic differences. Nina said that there are some religions in Malaysia, such as Islam, Christian, Buddhist, and Hindu, and most of religious believers is difficult to accept the cross-cultural marriage in their family, especially in Islamic law that forbids cross-cultural marriage between religious. In other religions also sometimes happens something like that. Moreover, racial differences is also one of the potential difficulties of a cross-cultural marriage in Malaysia. In Malaysia, according to Nina, there are 3 main races, namely Malay, India, and Chinese. They are, can be said, difficult to accept other cultures from other races in their family. People in Malaysia with their own cultural background, feel difficult if they have to combine 2 cultures by cross-cultural marriage, especially for them who still hold orthodox.
In Nina opinion, in this globalization era already there are many modern-minded people who can accept cross-cultural marriage. Like in her country, Malaysia, Nina said that there are 2 kinds of people, they are:
1. old-minded people who always thought that someone can only marry other one who comes from the same religious background and the same cultural background, and
2. modern-minded people who can accept differences and not too concerned with differences in cross-cultural marriage.
I think in Indonesia also has quite a lot happening cross-cultural marriage, especially in inter-race/ethnic. Some potential difficulties of cross-cultural marriage in Indonesia, I think same as in Malaysia, they are religious differences and racial/ethnic differences. As we know, in Indonesia there are 5 recognized religions, they are Islam, Catholic, Protestant, Buddhist, and Hindu. And the most difficult to accept cross-cultural marriage is Islam, because one law in Islam is forbids cross-cultural marriage in terms of religious differences. So did the people of other religions who prefer to marry someone of same religion than married someone of different religion. And racial differences is also a problem in Indonesia, even not as difficult as in Malaysia. Even still there are so many people who prefer to marry someone of the same race/ethnic, but people who marry someone of different race/ethnic not exactly a little. Most of them do cross-cultural marriage to create diversity in their family. Sometimes, parents and old people in family very involved in the event of conflict in cross-cultural marriage because they still have old-minded about it, where they can not accept other race/ethnic in their family and they feel difficult to combine 2 or more cultures in their family. They thought that the presence of other cultures would interfere their culture that they have been believed since first.
In this globalization era, I think people have been able to think realistically, in modern way, accept and support cross-cultural marriage. Cross-cultural marriage because of religious differences is quite difficult to be accepted because of the differences in each religion law. Sometimes someone have to follow the religion of her/his partner and leave the religion that she/he has been trusted since first. While cross-cultural marriage because of race/ethnic differences, in my opinion is a good thing to do, because that thing can combine 2 different races/ethnics and also some observations shown that cross-cultural marriage can produce superior posterity, in good physical and also intelligence. One study that prove it is an observation from Gillian Rhodes, a psychologist at the University of Western Australia along with Craig Roberts, professor of biology at the University of Newcastle UK, they found that children face from cross-cultural marriage seem more physically attractive and their body resistant to disease caused by hereditary factors. So, in my opinion, cross-cultural marriage because of race/ethnic differences is a good thing to do, while cross-cultural marriage because of religious differences may be done but must still consider the laws of each religion.
PS: It’s my Final Project for this semester, so what do you think? Could I pass it and get good score for this assignment? ❓ 😕 ❓