Malaysian cultural icon, Azah Aziz is honoured on Google Doodle today

HAJAR UMIRA MD ZAKI
HAJAR UMIRA MD ZAKI
21 Aug 2022 07:47am
The Google Doodle of late Azah Aziz
The Google Doodle of late Azah Aziz
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Google honours the late Azah Aziz for her lifelong work in journalism and Malay culture with a special Google Doodle.

Head to Google's home page and you'll find a Doodle of Azah in a traditional attire, holding a book, with a backdrop of Malay textile.

If you're unsure of what Google Doodle is, it is the special, temporary altercation of the Google logo on its homepage to commemorate special events, or icons.

Azah, is the late mother of the former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor, Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz. She would have turned 94 today (Aug 21).

The former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor, Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Azah Aziz and Google Malaysia managing director, Marc Woo
The former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor, Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Azah Aziz and Google Malaysia managing director, Marc Woo



“I am very thankful to Google Malaysia for giving the honour to my late mother to commemorate her contribution as a journalist and in the preservation of our cultural heritage.

“My mother was a path-breaking journalist since the 1950s.

“In the early days, she would write about women affairs, women’s interest and women's rights. She also used to write a diary and I was so upset and asked why she would share private things about what happened in our life.

"Well, people were interested and loved to read about it," said Zeti at the launch of the Doodle held at Google's headquarters in Axiata Tower.

Zeti added that her late mother, who was also well-known as Mak Ungku, was like a celebrity during her lifetime which people would recognise and try to approach her whenever she's out and about.

In the journalism field, she contributed her expertise to organisations such as New Straits Times, Berita Harian, Utusan Melayu and even a women's magazine called Wanita.

She was also the founder and chairman of organisations such as Malaysian Women Journalists Association (Pertama).

Some of the notable figures she interviewed throughout her career as a journalist includes the former prime minister of India, Indira Gandhi which is to date the only woman prime minister of India, the first woman cosmonaut sent by Russia, Valentina Nikolaveya-Tereshkova.

“My mother would always joke that she is known as the wife of a professor, Ungku Aziz, and the mother of a governor – Zeti Aziz. But she was a woman of extraordinary talents and should be known by her name only, Azah Aziz, the Malay cultural icon.

“She also wrote about preserving the textile and costumes of the Malay world and about preserving the cultural heritage.

“This is portrayed in her book called "Rupa dan Gaya Busana Melayu" which describes the exquisite and splendid textile that is worn everyday by Malaysians,” she added.

To note, Azah has written other book about Malay textiles and costumes as well.

Azah Aziz, photo by Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz
Azah Aziz, photo by Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz

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As Zeti wanted people to learn more about the Malay cultural heritage embodied in the textiles and costumes, she had the book translated and it will be widely distributed.

The former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor, Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Azah Aziz shared her about her late mother, Azah Aziz's stories at Google Malaysia office
The former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor, Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Azah Aziz shared her about her late mother, Azah Aziz's stories at Google Malaysia office

Azah had repeatedly wrote in her book on the importance of appreciating and cherishing our heritage.

Through the years, Azah Aziz developed interests in collecting antique garments and fabrics from the old Malay world. She owns over more than 100 types of heritage clothings such as Baju Kurung, baju Melayu and Kebaya.

You can find out more about Azah Aziz through this video made by Google, here.