Kadazan people

The Kadazan are an indigenous ethnic group in the Malaysian state of Sabah on the island of Borneo. Because of the similarities in culture and language with the Dusun the common class of the Kadazan - Dusun was created, with about 570,000 members representing the largest ethnic group of the people of Sabah.

Kadazan - term in anthropology

Rutter presents in 1929 the relationship between the Kadazan Dusun with her ​​:

" The Dusun usually describes himself as tulun Tindal ( rural residents ) or, on the west coast, particularly at Papar, as a Kadazan "

The view that the Kadazan only represent a conceptual subdivision of the Dusun About the concept, also found in the modern anthropological literature reflected.

The term Dusun is apparently a derived from the Malay term, with the inhabitants of the coast designated the predominantly agricultural population of the hinterland and a pejorative connotation inherent in because it was associated with a backward, uncouth country folk. While the Dusun were originally longhouse residents, gave some Dusun tribes this kind of dwelling on; they began in the western coastal areas and the upland plains with the wet- rice cultivation and animal husbandry in the hill regions and around Mount Kinabalu with the shifting. These originally classified as Dusun groups include some subsets such as Kadazan, Rungus, Ranau and Tambunan which differ in their social and cultural characteristics.

Kadazan - term today

While the term Kadazan originally had a purely ethnological importance, it is now increasingly used in the perspective of politics, a religious classification between the various indigenous groups, mostly attach to the Christian faith or animism, and the predominantly Islam facing Malay and other indigenous groups to produce. This is also reflected in the design of the official population statistics of Malaysia, where the group of Bumiputera in Malay, Kadazan - Dusun, Bajau and Murut is divided.


Among the Kadazan the coastal plains, the tradition is maintained to build cairns, possibly as a memorial or as a boundary marker. In other ethnic groups of Borneo shared the Kadazan customs such as the burial in clay jars, head-hunting, the creation of skull houses and the tattoo.

Kadazan - Dusun - conflict

The mutual rivalry from the mid-20th century between the Kadazan Dusun and the and the resulting politicization disabled and weakened in the 1960s, the growth and development of the ethnic groups in socio - cultural, economic and political terms. To solve the identity crisis was created at the 5th Conference of Delegates of the Kadazan Cultural Association (KCA ) on 4 and 5 November 1989, the term Kadazan - Dusun. [Note 2]

Political networking

Through close personal ties and the formation of interest groups such as the cultural community KCA the Kadazan generally have a high degree of networking among themselves and achieved in politics. This is reflected in the Parti Bersatu Sabah political parties (PBS) and Kadazan - Dusun United Pasokmomogun Organization ( UPKO ), both of which are dominated by Kadazan and the Barisan Nasional part of, the ruling coalition in the Malaysian Parliament. The UPKO presented from 1963 to 1967 under Tun Fuad Stephens, the government of Sabah. From Joseph Pairin Kitingan 1985-1994 was for the PBS Prime Minister of Sabah; today he is the supreme representative of the cultural community of the Kadazan - Dusun. From 1998 to 1999 reigned Bernard Dompok Giluk of the UPKO the state.