IJCH 2015 Vol.1(2): 115-121 ISSN: 2382-6177
doi: 10.18178/ijch.2015.1.2.022

Influences of Regional Sama-Bajau Coastal Dwellings: Social Perspectives through Identity Molding

Iziq Eafifi Ismail, Abdullah Sani Hj Ahmad, and Ismail Ibrahim
Abstract—Ever since colonial powers came into Malay Archipelago, one of the major transformations introduced is the occupying territory by the controlling powers known as State boundary. It delineates cultural grounds that have been long interconnected between mainlands in the archipelago that extends from the Philippine toward Indonesia wherein lies the vestiges of the largest diaspora of ethnic dispersed from its ancestral ground- Sama-Bajau. This particular ethnic is unanimous throughout the coastal area of Malay archipelago with largest concentration would be in Mindanao of Philippine, Sabah of Malaysia and Sulawesi of Indonesia in which Sama- Bajau settlements have developed according to the locality. The objective of this paper is to discuss the evolution of coastal dwellings amongst this ethnic and the influences affecting the growth of Sama-Bajau perceptions and identity particularly within their built environment. Deriving from textual analysis, this paper theorized major influences by socio-politics discourses of Sama-Bajau throughout the history overlapping pre-colonial and post-colonial occupancies in Mindanao and Sabah specifically in its development towards achieving globalization. Study posits that there were two major conducting exertions that coerced development of Sama-Bajau dwellings and settlement: 1) Acculturation, through interethnic relation and marriage; and 2) Malleability, through governing power. Coastal dwellings as in its rudimentary state, gradually thrived onto creating cohesive settlements that had major authority over Sama-Bajau ascension traversing social mobility in their quest for identity consolidation.

Index Terms—Sama-bajau, coastal dwellings, social mobility, acculturation, governing body.

Iziq Eafifi Ismail is with the Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Skudai, 81310, Johor, Malaysia (e-mail: iziqism@gmail.com).
Abdullah Sani Hj Ahmad is with the Department of Architecture, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Skudai, 81310, Johor, Malaysia (e-mail: basani@utm.my).
Ismail Ibrahim is with Faculty of Psychology and Education, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, 88400, Sabah, Malaysia (e-mail: ismailbinibrahim@yahoo.com).

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Cite: Iziq Eafifi Ismail, Abdullah Sani Hj Ahmad, and Ismail Ibrahim, "Influences of Regional Sama-Bajau Coastal Dwellings: Social Perspectives through Identity Molding," International Journal of Culture and History vol. 1, no. 2, pp. 115-121, 2015.

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