Dr Thaatchaayini Kananatu

Department Coordinator, Senior Lecturer

Department of Business Law & Taxation

603 5514 4450
Room 6-5-05


Thaatchaayini Kananatu is a Senior Lecturer in Law at the Business Law and Taxation Department, School of Business, Monash University Malaysia. She holds an LLB Law (Hons.) (Cardiff), LLM/Masters in International Law (Oxford Brookes), and a PhD (Monash) in socio-legal studies.Her research interests include law, gender and race; law and social movements; as well as ethics, human rights and social justice. She is the author of Minorities,Rights and the Law in Malaysia (2020, Routledge) and is co-editor of Vulnerable Groups in Malaysia (2020, De Gruyter) with Sharon G. M. Koh. She is also a British High Commissioner’s Chevening Scholar.

Academic Qualifications

Doctor of Philosophy
Institution Monash University
Year awarded 2014
Master of International Law (LLM)
Institution Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, U.K.
Year awarded 2001
Certificate in Legal Practice (CLP)
Institution Malaysian Legal Qualifying Board
Year awarded 2000
Bachelor of Laws (LLB Hons.)
Institution Cardiff Law School, University of Wales, U.K.
Year awarded 1999

Membership in Associations and International Bodies

Name of Association/International Body British High Commission Chevening Scholar
Role Member
Duration of membership - Month/Year September 1997 - current
Name of Association/International Body Socio-Legal Studies UK
Role Member
Duration of membership - Month/Year 2012 - 2015
Name of Association/International Body Law and Society Association, United States
Role Member
Duration of membership - Month/Year 2019 - 2020

Expert on Policy Formulation Panel and Professional Body

Panel Public Policy Research and Consultation on Malaysian Indians and the Eleventh Malaysia Plan (2016-2020), Institute of Ethnic Studies (KITA), National University of Malaysia.
Role Academic/Policy recommendations
Duration June 2014 – December 2015

Areas of Expertise

1 Socio-legal Studies
2 International Law
3 Ethics


Subject CodeSubject
BTM5909 Ethics and Global Corporate Governance
BTM5919 International Trade Law

Book Chapters

* Research Monograph: Kananatu, T. (2020). Minorities, Rights and the Law in Malaysia, Asian Studies Series. London: UK, Routledge. https://www.routledge.com/Minorities-Rights-and-the-Law-inMalaysia/Kananatu/p/book/9780367862398
* Bong, S. Goh, J. & Kananatu, T. (forthcoming 2020). Revisiting Gender and Sexuality Justice in Asia: Bridging academia and activism. In Bong, S., Goh, J. & Kananatu, T. (Eds.), Effecting Gender and Sexuality Justice in Asia – Finding resolutions through conflicts, London: UK, Springer.
* Kananatu, T. & French, J. (forthcoming 2020). Hindu mothers and Muslim-convert fathers: Custody battles at the intersection of gender, religion and rights in Malaysia. In Bong, S., Goh, J. & Kananatu, T. (Eds.), Effecting Gender and Sexuality Justice in Asia – Finding resolutions through conflicts, London: UK, Springer.
* Kananatu, T., Santra, N. & Yahya, E. (forthcoming 2021). Riding on Research: A Library-Faculty Partnership. In Torres, L. et al (Eds.), Connecting the library to the curriculum: Pedagogies that impact student learning. Singapore: Springer.
* Kananatu, T. & Koh, G. M. (2020). Vulnerability and the Vulnerable in an Asian Plural State. In Kananatu, T. & Koh, G. M. (Eds.), Vulnerable groups in Malaysia. The Global Asia Series. Berlin: Germany, De Gruyters.
* Kananatu, T. (2020). The Trans Community as Outliers of Malaysian Society. In Kananatu, T. & Koh, G. M. (Eds.), Vulnerable groups in Malaysia. The Global Asia Series. Berlin: Germany, De Gruyters.
* Kananatu, T. & Koh, G. M. (2020). The Vulnerable in Malaysia: Moving Forward. In Kananatu, T. & Koh, G. M. (Eds.), Vulnerable groups in Malaysia. The Global Asia Series. Berlin: Germany, De Gruyters.
* Kananatu, T. (2016) ‘A Sociolegal Study Of The Indian Minority In Malaysia’, in Jayasooria, D. and Nathan, K. (eds.) Contemporary Malaysian Indians: History, Issues, Challenges & Prospects. Bangi, Malaysia: Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, pp. 173–188.

Scholarly Journals

* Goh, J. N., & Kananatu, T. (2019). Mak nyahs and the dismantling of dehumanisation: Framing empowerment strategies of Malaysian male-tofemale transsexuals in the 2000s. Sexualities, 22(1–2), 114-130. https://doi.org/10.1177/1363460717740256
* Kananatu, T. (2018). The Politico-Legal Mobilisation of Ethnic Indians before Malaysia’s 2018 Election. The Round Table, 107(6), 703-716. https://doi.org/10.1080/00358533.2018.1545938
* French, J., Koh, S. M., & Kananatu, T. (2018). The 14th General Elections and the Changing Business Environment in a “New” Malaysia. Journal of International Business Education, 13, . http://www.neilsonjournals.com/JIBE/abstractjibe13newmalaysia.html


* Antolak-Saper, N., Kowal, S., Lindsey, S., Ngeow, C.Y. and Kananatu, T. (2020). Drug Offences and the Death Penalty in Malaysia: Fair Trial Rights and Ramifications. Monash University. https://www.monash.edu/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/2213867/MU_ADPAN_report_v6. pdf
* Kananatu, T. (2017). Law, Gender and Mobilisation: The Case of the Mak Nyahs in Malaysia. Praxis (Thomson Reuters).
* Kananatu, T. (2016). Young Indian Women in Malaysia & the Eleventh Malaysia Plan: Beneficiary or Blindspot? In Reviewing the 11th Malaysia Plan (2016-2020): Tapping the Opportunities & Plugging Into the Provisions (pp.71-73). Kuala Lumpur: Institute of Ethnic Studies, National University of Malaysia.
* Kananatu, T. (2012, October 23). Gay Activism in Singapore: A Review of “How Does Law Matter to Social Movements? A Case Study of Gay Activism in Singapore” by Lynette Janice Chua. Dissertation Reviews. Retrieved from http://dissertationreviews.org/archives/1538.

Local Presentations

* 18 February 2019 - Monash University, Malaysia Co-presented a paper with Vanitha Sundra-Karean, on ‘The Changing Nature of Values Underpinning Malaysian Constitutionalism – Tracing the Ebb and Flow of Law Consciousness – Where from; Where to beyond GE14?’ at the Conference on Malaysian Constitutionalism Post-GE14: A New Dawn?
* 12 – 14 November 2018 - Monash University, Malaysia Presented a paper on ‘Legal Identities, Cross-Dressing, and Gender Dysphoria: Contesting Gender Identity in the Malaysian Courts’ at the International Conference on Gender and Sexuality in Asia (CoGen).
* 24–25 June 2014 Public Policy Research Consultation on Contemporary Malaysian Indians, Institute of Ethnic Studies (KITA), National University of Malaysia Invited to present social policy recommendations in a paper on ‘Law and Minorities: A Case-Study of Indians in Malaysia’ for the Eleventh Malaysia Plan (2016-2020).

International Presentations

* 28 – 31 May 2020 – Hyatt Regency Convention Centre, Denver, United States [Virtual Conference] Presented a paper on gender, religion and law at the Law and Society Association Conference, organised by the Law and Society Association, United States.
* 8 – 9 July 2019 – International Center for Ethnic Studies (ICES), Colombo, Sri Lanka Invited to present a paper on ‘Race, Rights and the "Quiet Minority": Mobilising the Law from the Colonial to the Postcolonial’ at the Migratory Justice: Legal Histories of South Asian Migration Workshop organised by the South Asian Studies Council, Yale Macmillan Centre, Yale University.
* 11 – 13 December 2017 - University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia Presented a refereed paper on ‘Using the Researcher Skill Development Framework to Construct Marking Rubrics for Law Assessments’ at the International Models of Engaged Teaching and Learning (I-MELT) Conference.
* 1 – 3 December 2016 - Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia Presented a paper on ‘Law, Race and Group-Differentiated Rights in Malaysia: From the Colonial Past to the Post-Colonial Present’’ at the Law and Society Association of Australia and New Zealand Conference. Attended the University of Southern Queensland’s International and Comparative Law Colloquium on Legal Transplants, 23rd – 24th November 2016.
* 21 – 23 March 2013 - KoGuan Law School, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China Presented a paper on ‘Law, Minority Group Identity and Rights: The Legal Mobilization of Indians in Colonial Malaya (1890-1957)’ at the 3rd East Asian Law and Society Conference.
* 10 March 2012-St. Anthony’s College, Oxford University, Oxford, United Kingdom Presented a paper on ‘Legal Mobilization in Post-Colonial Malaysia: The Law as a Political Tool for Marginalized Groups’ at the Southeast Asian Studies Symposium: Contemporary Issues in Southeast Asia.

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