This book consists of five talks on the same topic, "Hadith ² A Re-Evaluation" at the National University of Malaysia organized by the Department of Anthropology andSociology. The background to these talks has been given in Chapter I.This subject truly needs a larger volume and a much more comprehensive research. I havehad to take a short cut due to the particular circumstances of the talks. I sincerely hope thatthe book achieves its purpose.I would like to express my highest appreciation and thanks to the University's Department of Anthropology and Sociology (with the kind permission and blessing of the University'sauthorities) which was brave enough to organize these talks, in spite of the "sensitive" natureof the topic. I would like also to thank the Hon. Minister for Education who intervened toallow the talks to go on after they were first cancelled by the University authorities.I must also thank the just and fair-minded people of Malaysia who spontaneously rose todemand that the talks be held.I owe a debt of gratitude to several friends who, at my request, have gone over the drafts of the talks and made useful comments and criticisms. I am also very grateful to many ordinary people in Malaysia and Singapore and to friends in the United States who gave me their unstinting encouragement and support as I wrestled to prepare and complete the talks.KASSIM AHMADKuala Lumpur,17 March, 1986.
AUTHOR'S PREFACE TO THIS TRANSLATION
I am grateful to my friend who has done a masterly translation of my book. I have had thedraft of the translation since he finished it in late 1987, one year after the publication of theMalay original. I have had it put into my computer and left it there until recently when Ithought that it was time to have it published.I therefore went over it and made what additions and changes I think necessary after eightyears since the book first saw the light of day. So, this is not an exact translation of the Malayoriginal, although the format and the arguments remain the same.Political considerations had led to the banning of the book a few months after it was published. However, after six years, I published a sequel, entitled Hadis ² Jawapan Kepada