Lecture by Dr. Henri Chambert-Loir will be held on Saturday, January 11th, 2020.

2019年12月17日 14:00:05

The first Malay account of the pilgrimage to Mecca as performed by a Malay Muslim is dated 886 AH, i.e. 1482 EC. It is found in the Malay epic Hikayat Hang Tuah (The Story of Hang Tuah). This text is the story, written at the end of the 17th century of a historical figure who lived in Malacca in the 15th century. It is made of facts and legends attributed to that hero, who has become a popular figure to this day in Malaysia. Hang Tuah was a high officer at the court of Malacca, a favourite of the Sultan, who sent him to various diplomatic missions in Asia and in Turkey.
When he was sent to Istanbul in order to buy cannons for the defense of Malacca against the Portuguese, he took the opportunity to perform the hajj. That experience is related in realistic terms. Hang Tuah meets with the Syarifs of Mecca and Madinah, he performs the rites one by one and then spends twelve days in Madinah in prayers before the tomb of the Prophet. There is little doubt that this is an authentic account of the hajj, even though the names of the local authorities quoted are difficult to identify.
However, various clues indicate that this episode is of foreign origin, most probably translated from an Arabic original, and has been grafted on the text of the hikayat in order to give it a Muslim tinge. This has implications on the character of the Hikayat Hang Tuah - a supposedly Muslim epic needing to be Islamised - and about the way the hikayat was built - in two steps and by addition from written sources.
Still, we do have an account of the hajj from the end of the 15th century, which might very well exist in Malay only.

organizerInstitute of Asian, African, and Middle Eastern Studies Sophia University
date and timeJanuary 11th, 2020 (Sat.) 15:30-17:30
venueSophia University, Yotsuya Campus
Building no.2, 6F Room 615a
titleThe First Account of the Hajj in Malay, End of 15th Century
profile of the lecturerDr. Henri Chambert-Loir is an expert on Malay literature, and is presently staying in Tokyo as Visiting Professor at the Institute of Languages and Cultures of Asia and Africa (ILCAA) of Tokyo University of Foreign Studies. Dr. Chambert-Loir obtained his Ph.D in Indonesian Studies from Sorbonne University in Paris in 1973, and served as Research Fellow at Ecole Francaise d Extreme-Orient (EFEO) from 1971 to 2013. During this period, he served as EFEO representative in Indonesia for 20 years. He has written extensively on Malay literature, history, and culture, and is presently conducting research on Malay historical texts in poetic form. His publications include the followings:

The Potent Dead: Ancestors, Saints and Heroes in Contemporary Indonesia. (co-edited with Anthony Reid). Crows Nest: Allen & Unwin - Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, 2002.
Sultan, Pahlawan dan Hakim Lima Teks Indonesia Lama (The Sultan, the Hero and the Judge: Five Ancient Indonesian Texts). Jakarta : Kepustakaan Populer Gramedia - EFEO, 2011.
Iskandar Zulkarnain, Dewa Mendu, Muhammad Bakir dan Kawan-Kawan: Lima Belas Karangan tentang Sastra Indonesia Lama (Iskandar Zulkarnain, Dewa Mendu, Muhammad Bakir and others: Fifteen Essays on Indonesian Ancient Literature). Jakarta: Kepustakaan Populer Gramedia - EFEO, 2014.
DiscussantYumi Sugahara(Osaka University)
admissionFree admittance. No reservation required. All who are interested are welcome to attend.