May  2024 22
Hakka and Pepper: Cultivation History and Collective Memory of Hakka Pepper Farmers in Kuching, Sarawak
作者 柯朝欽
Author Chao-ching Ko
關鍵詞 砂拉越胡椒、砂拉越客家、集體記憶、客家胡椒種植
Keywords Sarawak Pepper, Sarawak Hakka, Collective Memory, Hakka Pepper Cultivation
摘要 馬來西亞的胡椒主要產自砂拉越,而砂拉越主要的胡椒種植者一百多年來都是客家人為主。直到上個世紀末,客家人才逐漸淡出胡椒種植,改由原住民為主要的胡椒種植者。儘管胡椒是砂拉越客家150年來的重要維生產業,但是在馬來西亞的客家歷史與客家文化的論述中,比起西加里曼丹的開礦公司的遷移與戰爭史詩,胡椒顯然還不算上是一個重要的「客家元素」。本研究因此試圖對砂拉越的胡椒種植進行產業田野調查與歷史資料採集,藉由對當地客家胡椒種植園主的實地考察以及口述採訪,來描繪戰後以來客家胡椒園的產業興衰現況,以及胡椒種植對於當地客家人在社會、經濟、政治等方面產生的影響。最後,本文也從《砂拉越憲報》關於祈求胡椒豐收的慶典報導,以及從60-70年代砂拉越重要的中文雜誌《海豚》報導的整理,以及筆者對古晉附近客家農民的訪談,描繪了一個砂拉越客家人所共有的胡椒種植的集體記憶。
Abstract Pepper is one of the most significant plants in history. Being the “king of spices,” pepper was traded over long distances between Europe and Asia during the “Geographical Discovery.” Pepper is similar to coffee, sugar cane, tobacco, and rubber in that it transcends regional economies and is deeply embedded in the global trade network.
Malaysia is currently among the top five pepper exporters in the world. Malaysian pepper is mainly produced in Sarawak, where it had been cultivated by the Hakka people for more than a century. Only in the 1980s did the Hakka people stop cultivating pepper. The aborigines took their place.
Although pepper cultivation was economically important for the Hakka people in Sarawak for 150 years, pepper is not a prominent “Hakka element” in discussions on Hakka collective memory and Hakka culture compared with discussions on the migration of mining companies and war epics in West Kalimantan.
Therefore, this study conducted industrial fieldwork and historical data collection on pepper cultivation in Sarawak.
Through investigations and oral interviews with local Hakka pepper plantation owners, this study attempted to describe the rise and fall of the Hakka pepper plantation industry in the postwar period, as well as the social, economic, and political effects of pepper planting.
This article briefly describes the social history of Hakka pepper farmers from the 1940s to the 1980s and presents their collective memory during this period.
Finally, this article compares reports in the Sarawak Gazette of festival prayers for a good pepper harvest with reports in Dolphin (海豚), an important Chinese magazine in Sarawak in the 1960s and 1970s. Interviews with Hakka farmers near Kuching illustrate a shared collective memory of pepper cultivation.


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