Brunei History Talks

A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to be the guest of honour at the Tarindak D'Seni restaurant for Malam Bicara Sejarah. It's a new method, certainly for Brunei, to introduce history. The History Centre invited a few speakers to speak on specific topics. Three topics were chosen, one was about Sultan Hashim, an Islamic historian who apparently many people know but somehow has escaped me by the name of Ibnu Khaldun and the third was about our own historian, Pehin Jamil. The talks were interesting and certainly opened up a few minds. However the Brunei Times have captured the story as follows:
 
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History buffs discuss historical figures

Sunday, September 9, 2012
OVER 100 history enthusiasts and academics attended the History Talk to discuss the contributions of important figures in history in an event held at the Brunei Arts and Handicrafts Training Centre yesterday.

Organised by the Brunei History Centre, the talk focused on the subject, 'Historical Figures: Their deeds and contributions', with local History experts delivering talks on the biographies of important people in history.

Attending the event as chief guest was Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, Hj Mohd Rozan Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Yunos.

Speaking to The Brunei Times, Hj Mohd Rozan said that the main aim of the yesterday's talk was to create awareness for the history of Brunei, and expose the different aspects of history to the participants.

Pointing out the important role of understanding history as a means for gaining a sense of identity, he said "If you don't know your history, you don't know your past...you wont know how important it is...the struggle that we experienced to get to where we are today".

"History, in some sense, it is you...it is us. If you know your past, then it is easy for you to chart your future", said Hj Mohd Rozan.

The History Talk featured several lecturers from Universiti Brunei Darussalam namely Associate Professor Dr Hj Asbol Hj Mail who delivered a talk on the father of Islamic History, Ibnu Khaldun and UBD lecturer Ismail Nordin who talked about Sultan Hashim Jalilul Alam 'Aqamaddin's contributions to history.

Ustaz Hj Abd Kadir N.C. Mohamed, researcher and translator of Arabic language from the Brunei History Centre, also gave a talk during the event which was based on the deeds and contributions of the current Brunei historian and Head of Brunei History Centre, the Honourable Pehin Jawatan Dalam Seri Maharaja Dato Seri Utama Dr Hj Mohd Jamil Al-Sufri.

Towards the end of the evening, a prize presentation was held for winners of the History essay-writing competitions and illustrative story-telling competition previously organised by the Brunei History Centre.

Hj Mohd Rozan said that recognition through such competitions and history talks that are conducted in a more relaxed and laidback setting are among a few of the ways that can help gain students' interests in the subject of History.

"A lot of people consider History as a dry subject...well, in some sense, it is a dry subject, but of course, if we make it more interesting, then people will be more interested in it. That is what we're trying to do here", he added.
 
The Brunei Times
 
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