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Southeast Asian Personalities of Chinese Descent
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This is a bold project recording the lives of a particular group of Southeast Asians. Most of the people whose biographies are included here have settled down in the ten countries that constitute the region. Each of them has either self-identified as Chinese or is comfortable to be known as someone of Chinese ancestry. There are also those who were born in China or elsewhere who came here to work and do business, including seeking help from others who have ethnic Chinese connections. With the political and economic conditions of the region in a great state of flux for the past two centuries, it is impossible to find consistency in the naming process. Confucius had stressed that correct names make for the best relationships. In this case, Professor Leo Suryadinata has been pursuing for decades the elusive goal of finding the right name to give to the large numbers of people who have, in one way or another, made their homes in, or made some difference to, Southeast Asia. I believe that, when he and his colleagues selected the biographies to be included here, they have taken a big step towards the rectification of identities for many leading personalities. In so doing, he has done us all a great service. - Professor Wang Gungwu, National University of Singapore
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About the Author

Leo Suryadinata is Director of the Chinese Heritage Centre, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

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