Monday, 22 June 2015

Perempuan Malaya in Universiti Malaya

In respond to the above writing:

I can relate what the author says about Universiti Malaya, but just as a degree student here. When I was in PASUM, the first time coming to this “prestigious” university, number one ranking in Malaysia, I really did not think of much to expect.
But my experience in UM brought me to think that there were really some part of the university that was prosperous with lively academic discourse among the warga not just any isolated research conferences. It was true and it wasn't deceitful. I met interesting people who were very much into good disourse especially in making changes in society or exploring new perspectives, aslo in improving religious outlook. I made friends with them, and we went together to some good classes too. I also got to know people who read gargantuan amount of books, in which some of them do not make into university. For them, the chase is not the academic pursuit but the fill of knowledge the society needs. Some of them choose to rather be a drop-out instead of having their academic freedom compromised (as in their version).

One day I took a taxi ride from UM to somewhere. The uncle asked me whether UM library had the book he wanted to read. He told me that he had ordered a written thesis from overseas. The book was about the Israeli and Palestinian history. Upon reaching the Malaysian Customs, the book was not permitted to enter Malaysia as it was banned here. The uncle claimed to be a Ph.D holder, and he was driving the cab to earn some money during his free time. I don't know if he was telling a lie about his education background. But even if he was, I know he didn't lie at how famish he was at reading. This was not the first time I met a taxi driver with admirable education background. The next time I took a taxi, the driver was an old man who used to work with Pak Sako, a historical Malaysian journalist. And blablabla his stories went.

I stayed in Kolej Kediaman Ke-12 like many other PASUM-ians. And life there gave me an ecstatic every now and then as a someone who were in search for good truth. The best was not just about meeting so many good people who were concerned and involved in advocating societal changes but my encounter with easily-found, cheap second-hand books, journals, and science magazines sold at just RM1 in front of the lifts was a great heaven for me. Even the surau had good academic books written by renown Islamic scholars that were imported either from Indonesia or Middle-East. Those books are not easily found in the local market for public like me. Somebody must have brought them there and donate to the surau. Here also was a place where I met a few akak who were keen with opened Islamic discourse. We went together to a SIS conference who publicised their documentation about “ulamak perempuan.” They were also willing to share some good paperworks, one like “Perlaksanaan Hudud di Kelantan.” There was also a group of people who opened up a free-to-read book station at the time of evening breeze beside the Tasik Varsiti. They would spread a tikar on the ground, people gathered on it and later listened to a bedah buku from random presenter.

As for Pekan Buku and the main library, I did my monthly visit there, either to buy books or borrow or just for readings. A lot of books in the store and the library widen my view about Islamic knowledge, far better than that supplied in conventional bookstore or any library I have been. I remembered during my high school years when I asked some people of some vague terms like “liberal”, “secular”, very few can answer convincingly or at least know what they were preaching against. But, laughably, I was also part of the people who cakap besar but know little about the real issue.

But imagine the strong perception I got before coming to my degree in UM. Degree life is expected to be another exciting journey of discovery. But, it feels slight lesser.

Well, medicine is not any less exciting. Just that, for now I would need to silently sit at the corner of my room and read some medical textbooks instead until the upcoming final exam finishes.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! MashaAllah, sister! U make me realize, life is not just when u go to the class, attend the lectures, & then go back to hostel, study, exam, finally, tadaa, u graduated, after all, u hve to work to pay back the loan or work as a mandatory services to ur scholar ==' LIFE is more than that.. LIFE is all about how u improve urself to be a better person & make urself useful, beneficial to the society, relligion ^_^