This article begins with a definition of the terms modernity, modernisation, and postmodernism. It discusses some of the characteristics prevalent in each stage of evolution and the legal system that exists. It investigates the relationship between these forces of change and the legal system that emerges.

A review of the influence of modernity, modernisation and postmodernism in the Asian context is carried out. It acts as a framework that assists a better understanding of the character and operation of the law. It also provides a benchmark against which specific law reform proposals and the direction, that the law takes, can be addressed. The South-East Asian financial crisis has revealed the need to improve the level of transparency, accountability and regulation among companies in the region. The shift towards the postmodernist era is characterised by a number of challenges. Finally, the article considers the effect of these changes on company law legislation and reform in the context of Malaysia.