Archive for February, 2009

72 Hours in Dhaka: Witnessing a Coup Close-Up

Friday, February 27th, 2009

It was undoubtedly one of the most surreal experiences in my life. Having flown all the way to Dhaka, Bangladesh, for a conference on peace strategies for South Asia, I found myself delivering the keynote address in the first panel of the following day. As the panel proceeded, the blackberries and handphones of the panelists [...]

Hillary in Asia: Can America Make-Over Its Image?

Friday, February 20th, 2009

And so the make-over has begun: Hillary Clinton’s whirlwind tour of Asia that takes her to China, Korea, Japan and Indonesia may well mark the beginning of new relations with the East Asian economies whose goodwill towards America at the moment will be crucial in President Obama’s attempts to recover America’s lost prestige and bring [...]

Privacy, Individualism and Identity: The Basis of Citizenship in a Democracy

Friday, February 20th, 2009

ONCE again, privacy – or the invasion of privacy to be precise – has become the subject of debate in Malaysian politics. Behind the morality and moralising that we hear from certain conservative quarters lies something more insidious, which is the call for conformity and total obedience to a narrow definition of what constitutes a [...]

Elizabeth Wong and Our Hope for a New Politics in Malaysia

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

As someone who has known Ms Elizabeth Wong, former ADUN and Exco member of the Selangor state government, for almost ten years, I am profoundly distressed by the treatment that has been meted out to her by the mainstream and tabloid press over the revelation of photos that have compromised her. There are no words [...]

Privacy and Our Political Culture

Monday, February 16th, 2009

Politics, we must remember, is something that takes place in the public domain. And it is in that public domain that politicians are judged for their actions, good and bad, right and wrong. The worth of a politician and his/her standing depends entirely on his/her conduct in the execution of the responsibilities that have been [...]

Announcement on Wonky Server

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

Deareth Readeth,
Announcement on this day, thirteenth the friday…. (yet not quite, for we art taketh artistick liberty)
Gentle readeth,
Ye olde websiteth hath been giving us cause for woe of late; though this be not the work of calumny or malfaence; for the honeth truth - and yea, it must be tolde - is that that [...]

Blind Loyalty? Re-Reading the Taj-us Salatin of Buchara al-Jauhari Today

Wednesday, February 11th, 2009

(Note: This article first appeared in The Nut Graph. It looks much prettier there – yusseri)
AS if it was not bad enough that Malaysia has been overrun by an outbreak of frogs – like a scene from some Biblical catastrophe – we now have to stomach the spectacle of humbug heroes and demagogues as well.
One [...]

OtherMalaysia Public Lecture: Remembering Our Other Half – India

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

PLACE: Central Market Annexe
DATE: Saturday, 14th February 2009
TIME: 4.30pm
This lecture will focus on OtherMalaysia’s concern to re-activate our collective memory of the past and to locate our own culture and history in a wider context. The blight of post-colonial national histories is the tendency to accept nation-state boundaries as a given and to write national [...]

How Indonesia’s Islamic Universities Are Different

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

Regardless of where you stand on the question of whether we are living in the age of Islamism, neo-Islamism or Post-Islamism, the fact remains that there is pretty much Islam all over the place at the moment; and much of this Islam is also going all over the place…
From the late 1970s onwards many a [...]