21st Century COE Program Archive


Date: May 6 (Sat), 2006
Location: Multi Media Room 1, Fusokan, Imadegawa Campus, Doshisha University
Title: Modernization and Islam in Malaysia with special reference to Mahathir's Islamization policy and Badawi's Islam Hadhari
Speaker: Osman Bakar (International Islamic University Malaysia)
  In the presentation, Professor Osman Bakar first explained Malaysian governmental policies concerning Islam from independence in 1957 until the period of the 4th Prime Minister, Mahatir. Further, Professor Osman described the policy of Islam Hadhari, or Civilizational Islam, of the 5th Prime Minister, Abdullah Badawi.
   In Malaysia, where Islam is the sole official religion, Islam had been an important factor in the governmental administration even before Mahatir’s regime. The government had enshrined Islamic values in such areas as Islamic missionary, welfare, and foreign policies. After the racial riot in 1969 and the period of martial law in the administration of the 2nd Prime Minister Abdul Razak, affirmative developmental policy for Muslim Malays was pursued in association with Islamic policies, and the two were promoted simultaneously. In the Mahatir regime, 'Islamization policy' was even implemented in the fields of education, monetary policy, etc., and emerged as important part of its administration, reflecting a more Islamic system.
  In Abdullah Badawi’s administration, established in 2003, Islam Hadhari was set up as the guideline for Islamic policies. Prime Minister Abdullah presented ten principles of Islam Hadhari, such as belief in God, just governance, balanced and comprehensive economic development, protection of minorities’ and women’s rights, etc.
  Discussing another side of Islam Hadhari, Professor Osman also noted its process of implementation, its prevalence through education and seminars, and so on. In the background of these issues are questions involving the balance of power between the governmental and opposition parties, and the necessity to reclaim support from Muslim Malay voters through emphasis of Islamic policy.
  One commentator, Mr. Kawabata Takashi (officer of the Second Division, Intelligence and Analysis Service, Ministry of Foreign Affairs) pointed out that principles and guideline of Islam Hadhari are too general and lack embodiment; thus, its actual influence on the administration is questionable.
  Another commentator, Mr. Oki Hirofumi (Ph.D. student of Malaya University), pointed out that, because of the multi-racial composition of Malaysia, Islamic policy might provoke opposition from non-Muslims while, on the other hand, too much regard for non-Muslims might make Muslims leave the governing party.
Yuki Shiozaki
( COE Promoted Researcher, Graduate Student, School of Theology, Doshisha University)