It’s official: Malaysians think adults don’t read

The Malaysian government offers tax relief on books bought, to the tune of $RM 1000 or so per year. (That’s $US 290, or $AUD 325, or Euro 200, or GBP 180.) Wonderful idea, and I congratulate them on encouraging reading.

One of my friends has been claiming religiously every year. She and her husband actually spend a great deal more than that on books. Her house is lined with books and book shelves.

This year the Malaysian Income Tax dept queried the expenditure. When my friends queried why they were being queried, the reply was … (wait for it):

“But you have no small children. How can you possibly be spending so much on books?’

Sigh. Says a lot about what you don’t see when you walk into the average Malaysian house, doesn’t it?


It’s official: Malaysians think adults don’t read — 4 Comments

  1. I know, sad isn't it, somehow, some people who read seem to lose interest when they get older. My stepdaughter is a forinstance, she was an avid reader as a child, she seems to have lost the habit as she grew older. I am sure she would tell us she didn't have the time with raising kids and teaching school. Its a big pity tho. I loved the picture I took of the little boy which was on my blog this morning where he was clutching a book to himself – he must have been all of 3 or so. Lets hope he will always be a reader.

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