Research Group 2-Development of Islam in Southeast Asia

     The group will conduct research of the development of Islam in Southeast Asia by focusing on documents written in Jawi, the Malaysian language written in the Arabic script that has heretofore been studied only to a limited extent. Utilizing as a core the pioneering methods established earlier in the Critical Study of the Modern Islamic World, the group intends to undertake wide-ranging collection and investigation of Jawi documents.
     Although the primary object will be to carry out empirical research based on the Jawi documents, the group also intends to conduct research on subjects such as Islamic movements, popular Islamic culture, Islamic thought, ethno-history and so on in each region, while simultaneously focusing on the correlations among the Islamic communities in those regions, and their links to other areas of the world such as South Asia and the Middle-East. Furthermore, the group intends to work in close cooperation with Muslim Networks of the Asia Research Group based in Waseda University.
     At present the main research activities consist of (1) The collection and cataloguing of kitabs (2) The study of political thought and activism through the investigation of documents written in local languages including Jawi (3) The re-evaluation of research on Islam in Southeast Asia and the positioning of Jawi Studies. With the above forming the core, the group will engage in active field studies, collect documents, organize symposiums, and issue academic publications.
     The group also plans to carry out and develop cooperative research undertaken in projects after the previously mentioned Critical Study of the Modern Islamic World, such as the Basic Inquiry into the Jawi Networks of the Southeast Asian Marine Areas, where the research representative was Midori Kawashima, and which was funded by the Toyota Foundation Research Grant between 2002 and 2003.
     With quarterly seminars and residential research/training programs forming the core, the group will decide its main focus topics each year and present research results in accordance with its progress.

Jawi Study Group (Archive)