Interview with Sharifah Munirah Alatas: Syed Hussein Alatas, Political Career and His Attitude Towards Politics

We, his children, saw what politics and politicking did to our father, and it was cruel. But we will offer our help, by educating, spreading the social democratic ideals of our father, to continue applying his ideas to current politics and society, and to help in transforming the backward mindset that exists in the nation. We are also committed to our respective scholarships because it is counter-productive to separate politics from intellectual pursuits. Most of all, we will persist in exposing the ignorant and unethical attitude towards intellectuals and scholarly pursuits, which is the fundamental reason why our political development can never be holistic and sustainable.

Hegel, Geuss and Benjamin: The Continuity and Discontinuity of History

If Hegel correctly defined our historical development, it means that the “maturity of reality” is progressing in our society. For instance, it is famously well-known that Francis Fukuyama’s The End of History and the Last Man is spirited in this Hegelian sense. Although the thesis could still be debatable, but it is undoubtedly true that his book is inspired by Hegelian’s historical idealism which highly regards reason as the central orientation of society. All in all, Hegel’s concept of history provides us with an optimistic view for the future of world history.

Naratif: Antara “Apa” dengan “Mengapa”

Lihat sahaja museum. Museum adalah manifestasi daripada integrasi antara ingat dan lupa. Museum takkan memaparkan semua bahan sejarah. Museum dipaksa (atau sengaja) memilih bahan-bahan sejarah tertentu. Pemilihan ini (seringkali juga dengan semangat moral/idealogi) bukan sahaja berdasarkan kepada bahan yang tersedia, tetapi juga berdasarkan kepada selera semasa mereka yang berwewenang. Termasuk selera khalayak, yang diandaikan mereka. Termasuk juga keterbatasan ruang yang ada. Ternyata, museum adalah lambang kepada integrasi antara pengenangan dan pelupaan; mengenang bahan tertentu sambil melupa bahan tertentu yang lain. Museum, dalam kata lain, hanya dapat mandiri di atas paradoks pengenangan dan pelupaan.

Reconsidering Jeffrey Alexander’s Cultural Trauma Theory

On good example of this: the propagandization of Indonesia’s distressed episode in 1965—Pembantaian 1965—when the communists or alleged members of the communist party and their family members were brutally exterminated. This was a massive and very organized brutality, carefully planned and enforced top-down by government officials. I would urge you to watch “The Act of Killings” and “The Look of Silence” by Joshua Oppenheimer to get the idea how this distortion of facts—propagandization via media and education (recent times)— leads to failure to attempt at reconciliation, to have meaningful discussion of the past to bring about efforts to eliminate stigmas toward current generations of the communist party members/ alleged members/victims of the that particular time.

Ruang: Fungsi-fungsinya

Ruang dan makna adalah dua dimensi yang mesti dipertimbangkan secara serentak bagi menghasilkan suatu pengamatan yang bersifat kebelakaan (holistic). Keupayaan untuk menghasilkan suatu pengamatan sosial dan budaya yang luas dan mendalam adalah amat dipengaruhi oleh peranan ruang.