Thanks to my mother’s collections of WANITA, diagnosis Malaysian most popular and oldest women magazine, I am able to conduct this PhD research based on WANITA magazine. WANITA stands for women in Malay language, first published in August 1969 by Utusan Group Malaysia Berhad for women in Malaysia, in Malay language. Nowadays WANTA are competed with many other Malaysia malay language popular women magazines such as Majalah Mingguan Wanita (womens weekly), UMI (mother), NONA (young lady) and many more.
For me personally, it interesting to be able to read not only the cover’s layout, style, images, typo but also the discussions in the content of the magazine. Some of the articles provides the missing piece of puzzle that we all might try to complete. I guess many Malaysian have faced these issues, each one of us carry puzzles and constantly search for the missing pieces of the puzzles. My missing puzzle are found through the old print media. Reading these old prints informed my practices. It is not only the modern glamorous products that contributes to the practices but also the older version because it shows the history of it. These artifacts are my precious, because it hold the key that will allow me to unlock the time tunnel to visit the past lifestyle of many Malaysian. Unfortunately not many of us gets to hold this key, mainly because this key are not available in many officials institutions. They are lost, perhaps in boxes, hidden in warehouse, kept in some safe hands of personal collectors or secondhand book shops. But without them, we are lost and confuse. History informed and shaped the future. Constructed history will shaped constructed future. We need resources, the more the better so we could choose, weight and follow the future we want to be in.
Look at the past Malaysian women… beautiful, modern and intelligent!