FROM PASEE TO SOUTHEAST ASIAN ISLAM: An archaeological semiotic study of shared symbols among Malays

Saifuddin Dhuhri


Historical accounts on the Sultanate of Malikussaleh and Southeast Asian Muslims are undertaken by many scholars. Looking meticolously to symbols and their meanings on Malikussaleh gravestones are, however, still given little attention. This article is an attempt to unearth the shift of Malays’ culture and identity as the contribution of Samudera Pasee’s to Southeast Asian Muslims. Underpinning by Muhammad Naquib Al-Attas theory on worldview of Islam, I argue that the coming of Islam in Southeast Asia is operated by Islamising locals symbols and language, which later develops new identity of Malays. By employing acheological semiotics analysis, I study symbols and ornaments carved in Samudera Pasee gravestones. This work has great contribution in understand the work of worldview of Islam in Malays’ work and adds significantly of the works of scholars, such as Ottoman Yatim and Azumardi Azra on Malays’ Islam and identity.


worldview of Islam; samudera pasee; cultural symbols

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