Archive for October, 2009

Leadership and the Cost of Reform

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

It seems that ‘reform season’ has arrived in Malaysia, and Malaysians are now being treated to the spectacle of both the ruling party UMNO and the opposition parties of the Pakatan Rakyat racing in the rush to reform themselves. Perhaps the only good thing to come out of this is the awareness and recognition of [...]

Have Non-Muslims Abandoned PAS? Or Has PAS abandoned the non-Muslims?

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

It has been observed by some that during the recent Eidul Fitri open house held by PAS, the number of non-Malays and non-Muslims who attended the gathering could be counted ‘on one hand’. That this deplorable turn-out has been lamented by some supporters of PAS is understandable, considering the fact that PAS has made many [...]

Dialogue, Respect and the Stupidity of Immigration Forms

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

If there is one thing that irritates me to no end, it is being labeled a ’spokesman’ for Islam and/or Muslims. For my part I can hardly claim to speak for anyone apart from myself – I would not even attempt to speak on behalf of my mother or her cats, much less for a [...]

Dialogue Beyond the Discourse of Geography

Monday, October 12th, 2009

Last week I found myself in Leiden, the Netherlands, where I was invited to speak at a symposium that dealt with the topic of ‘Everything Under Control?’. Needless to say, the Foucauldian theme was of interest to me, and I was happy to attend the symposium and to speak on the subject of Religion and [...]

Religion, Between Control and Contingency

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

(Note: This is a summary of the talk I gave at the VeerStichting Symposium - Everything Under Control? -at Leiden, 7-8 October 2009 – Farish)
Social control seems to be the obsession of many conservative believers today: In Malaysia a woman is about to be caned for the alleged offence of drinking a beer. In Aceh, [...]