Methods of Vilification: Cam Perceptions of the Enemy or “Masuh” in Historical Perspective – a seminar by Mohamed Effendy Bin Abdul Hamid (Wed, 18 August 2010)

Speaker: Mohamed Effendy Bin Abdul Hamid (PhD Candidate, University of Hawaii at Manoa)
Date: Wednesday, 18 August 2010
Time: 3:30pm – 5:30pm
Venue: AS3, Level 6, SEAS Seminar Room (06-20)

According to the Vietnamese chronicle, Dai Viet Su Ky Toan Thu, on March 22, 1471 A.D, King Lê Thánh Tông entered the Cam capital Cha-ban (Vijaya) which collapsed after a four-day siege. More than 30,000 Cams were captured, including King Tra Toan and his family members, and over 40,000 Cam soldiers were killed. Sporadic and ineffectual resistance was conducted by the Cam even after 1471 A.D (recorded in primary Cam and Vietnamese sources) until the 19th century when the last Cam king was executed by Emperor Minh Mang.

“Masuh” or enemy is one of the terms often used by the Cam in their manuscripts to describe the “Yun” (Vietnamese) Vietnamese. However there are other terms that are used to describe the Vietnamese such “Patao Jek”, “Anak Yun” and “baol jek”. In light of the tumultuous history of the Cam with the Vietnamese, my presentation attempts to understand the Cam perspective of the Vietnamese contained in the Cam manuscripts. How were the Vietnamese portrayed in such manuscripts? Why were they portrayed as such? When did such perceptions develop and what are the processes involved in the developments of such portrayals? What are the issues surrounding such portrayals of the Vietnamese?

How the Cam have historically perceived the Vietnamese has not been adequately understood. In this presentation, Mr Mohamed Effendy highlights the existence and reading of several Cam manuscripts that he is currently analyzing for his PhD dissertation and discusses how the manuscripts shed more light to this grey area of Cam history.

About the speaker
Mohamed Effendy Bin Abdul Hamid is a PhD Candidate of the History Department, University of Hawaii at Manoa. He attained a Master’s degree in 2007 from the Southeast Asian Studies Program, National University of Singapore. He is a winner of several awards and prizes, including the Daniel Kwok Prize for Best Teaching Assistant Award (History Department, University of Hawaii), the Daniel W.Y. Kwok Endowed Fund in History, John F. Kennedy Memorial Fellowship in History, and the Moscotti Fellowship (University of Hawaii at Manoa).