NEFERTARI A. ARSAD
The paper documents the intellectually-stimulating process involved in conceptualization and development of the course Islam in Southeast Asia and the resulting emergent themes culled from continuing research. The course is set in the Philippine context as an academic offering within the Philippine’s premier university, borne of a mandate to foster academic and cultural knowledge-sharing and crucial understanding leading to among others, harmonious coexistence within the national polity.
The course necessarily assumes a regional, multi-disciplinary perspective covering broad topics. The decision-making process focuses on ascertaining and selecting the most salient of these topics, corresponding course delivery methodologies. Intersecting themes include shared civilizations, cultural heritage, orality, colonial histories and regional dynamics through time. The richness of the course scope is such that it connects to various issues of contemporary significance, requiring judgments on content scope and duration, themes versus topics for discussion/reporting, their respective formats, and last but not least, the viable tangents for independent research, if possible within the time frame of one academic semester.