dinsdag 1 december 2015

The Orientalist Quest of Amir Luthfi and Sudirman

About 20 November I received a telephone call from Prof. Dr. Amir Luthfi, once a PhD student in Leiden in the 1980s, later Rector of the UIN, Islamic University of Pekan Baru, that he was for a short stay in Leiden. He was together with Dr. Sudirman, some time ago Director of the graduate School. The two are now close to their retirment  but have began with an ambitious project: a history of Dutch Orientalist Studies on Indoensia.
Dr. Amur Luthfi, scholar, manager of the Islamic University in Pekan Baru, and once a politician for the province of Riau. Now he has only academic ambitions.
I suggested the two that they begin with the bibliography by Irene Farjon and Ben Boland. There is a dichotomy in the scholars/soldiers/administrators. Those who seek law and order (and enter the archives through the police reports) and the mystical/linguistic academics (who pay attention to the manuscript tradition). Already Mukti Ali once stated that nesides the study of Orientalisme also Occidentalism is important: how do Indonesians perceive all these Western schjolars?
Here we stand in the lobby of Ibis Hotel, Leiden. A rainy Sunday afternoon. They will be happy to be back in Indonesian, perhaps? Probably?  And it is not easy to undertake such cross-cultural study! Good luck and perseverance with your work and always welcome for advice, criticism or suggestions.

Geen opmerkingen: