Adat perpatih
customary law
intangible cultural heritage
intergenerational knowledge transfer
oral transmission

How to Cite



The customary law of adat perpatih (AP) is integral to the Malay identities in Negeri Sembilan that represents their culture and heritage. Various notions of safeguarding intangible cultural heritage (ICH) have been discussed in several ways, albeit not specific to the centralized inventory system of ICH in Malaysia. Hence, this paper identified the relevant mechanisms in safeguarding and sustaining AP’s customary law in Negeri Sembilan, which was from the bottom level of society amongst its practitioners and the local community. In this study, twelve research participants were involved, and data were collected through an in-depth interview and participant observations in Negeri Sembilan. Notably, this study successfully identified the relevant mechanisms in sustaining the AP amongst the Malays of Negeri Sembilan, which was the intergenerational knowledge transferred through the process of ‘look, listen, and learn’ and oral transmission from the elders. Moreover, these transmission processes were important to pass down AP practices from one generation to the next generation and part of safeguarding and inventory mechanisms in the future.


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