Mohd Faizal Bin Musa
Pages 177-193
DOI: 10.3726/CUL.2018.01.11


This paper is diagnostic type rather than a solution one. There are claims among certain quarters that The Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948 (UDHR 1948) is a Western mould human rights. However, I will argue that human rights are benchmark for modernization and progress in democracy, and it is traceable within Islam. Using Syed Hussein Alatas‘s Ideal of Excellence (Cita Sempurna Warisan Sejarah) as thereotical framework, my attempt is to highlight the memory of Tanzimat during Ottoman empire as one triumph heritage and successful story of human rights modernization within Islam, and not the moment or starting point of failure for the Ottoman. Unfortunately, this modernization does not reflected in the Malay world as it is perceived as the weakening process of Ottoman. Today, similar challenges faced by Ottoman are being faced by the Malay world. Legalistic Islam and Wahhabism are among others that slowing down the modernization of human righs within Malay world.