This is the unfinished autobiography of Tun Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman, the medical doctor who held key government positions in the first two decades of Malaysian nation building, and who was an important early player within UMNO, the country's dominant political party. Drifting into Politics was found among the private papers that were handed over to the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS) in 2005 by Tun Dr Ismail's eldest son, Mohd Tawfik.
The family has asked for it to be published in 2015, this year being the 100th anniversary of Tun Dr Ismail's birth. This is an apt time indeed to make his reflections on his own life available to the world. This is also the third book to come out of the Tun Dr Ismail papers which are kept at ISEAS Library.
The Reluctant Politician: Tun Dr Ismail and His Time, the biography written by Ooi Kee Beng and published in 2006 is ISEAS's all-time bestseller, and it brought Tun Dr Ismail back with great impact into Malaysian political analysis and discourse. It has been translated into Malay and Chinese. The second book – Malaya's First Year in the United Nations – has also been welcomed by scholars of Malaysia's foreign affairs and diplomacy. This present volume continues Malaysia's rediscovery of Tun Dr Ismail.