According to Ong, “Anthropologists studying spirit possession phenomena have generally linked them to culturally specific forms of conflict management that disguise and yet resolve social tensions within indigenous societies. In contract, policymakers and professionals see spirit possession episodes as an intrusion of archaic beliefs into the modern setting” (1988, p. 242). What are some of the sources of conflict for the Malay women working in the multinational factories? Are the spirit possessions a form of rebellion or simply a form of “illness”, “mass hysteria” (p. 248)?
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