Malay concept of history as understood from the classical Malay historical texts

Othman, Hussain (2006) Malay concept of history as understood from the classical Malay historical texts. PhD thesis, Universiti Islam Antarabangsa.

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Abstract

Studies conducted by western scholars on the history of the Malays since the beginning of the European colonisation had resulted in a number of undesirable outcomes. The works resulted from these studies were detrimental to the worldviews of the Malays and it was through these works that the misconceptions on Malay history mainly originated. The misconceptions rooted from two major factors. Firstly, the western bias views towards Malay history due to their pride over the superiority of their political power within the Malay region. Secondly, the rampant negative perceptions over the classical Malay historical texts. In order to counter their arguments and to reestablish a proper Malay concept of history, this study suggested a reinvestigation on the Malay classical texts using a proper and appropriate method. This study aims at a redevelopment of the Malay concept of history as understood by the Malays from their classical historical texts. For the purpose of the study, three great books (Karya Agung) of Malay history, namely Hikayat Raja-raja Pasai, Sejarah Melayu or Malay Annals and Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa were hereby selected to be the major sources from which the Malay concept of history could be unveiled and redeveloped. Generally, this study employed a traditional historical and cosmological analysis method which is neither quantification nor psychohistory. Specifically, philological and the traditional cosmological methods were two major approaches utilized in order to unveil the concept of Malay history from the selected texts. In philological method, the main concern is to study the external contents of the classical Malay historical texts. While in the traditional cosmological approach, the internal aspects of the texts were analyzed by utilizing the traditional cosmological approach as practiced by the scholars in this field. Modern historical approach had indeed unable to explain most of these internal aspects of the contents particularly regarding the mythological and legendary aspects. Through these approaches, a remarkable finding showed that the Malays owned a very special concept of history. Even the most unhistorical aspects of the classical Malay historical texts were finally discovered to be embodied a number of significant historical values. Some suggestions and recommendations had been made for further studies in the future.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Subjects:D History General and Old World > DS Asia
ID Code:1459
Deposited By:M.Iqbal Zainal A
Deposited On:20 Apr 2011 15:21
Last Modified:29 Apr 2011 14:44

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