“This books is most valuable for its minutely detailed record of the everyday life of the Indos of Java in the heyday of the Dutch East Indies. Ms. Schenkhuizen was a keen observer, with what seems a near-photographic memory for scenes and situations…. The book provides plenty of raw material for the study of culture contact and human tensions. Anyone interested in ethnic relations in a colonial hierarchy should read this book.”
E. N. Anderson, Anthropology and Humanism
The memoirs of Marguérite Schenkhuizen provide an overview of practically the whole of the twentieth century as experienced by persons of mixed Dutch and Indonesian ancestry who lived in the former Dutch East Indies. The memoirs provide vignettes of Indonesian life, both rural and urban, as seen through the eyes of the author first as a girl, then as a wife separated from her husband during the Japanese occupation, finally as an immigrant to the United States after World War II.
This self-portrait gives glimpses of the life of Indos from inside their society, glimpses that are valuable for their descendents as well as for outsiders. Written with humor and a positive town, Schenkhuizen’s story sets aside the myth that Indos were denied access to the upper layers of Dutch colonial society or were otherwise disadvantaged. Instead, her life story provides an authentic view of a vital Indo culture and experience that has been unavailable to the general reader of English.
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In 1500 Malay Malacca was the queen city of the Malay Archipelago, one of the great trade centers of the world. Its rulers, said to be descendents of the ancient line of Srivijaya, dominated the lands east and west of the straits. The Portuguese, unable to compete in the marketplace, captured the town.
Asian Studies · Southeastern Asia · Malaysia · 18th century · 17th century · European History · Asian History · International History · History · Business and Economics · Southeast Asian Studies · Asia
Being “Dutch” in the Indies portrays Dutch colonial territories in Asia not as mere societies under foreign occupation but rather as a “Creole empire.” In telling the story of the Creole empire, the authors draw on government archives, newspapers, and literary works as well as genealogical studies that follow the fortunes of individual families over several generations. They also critically analyze theories relating to culturally and racially mixed communities.
Millions of Chinese have left the mainland over the last two centuries in search of new beginnings. The majority went to Southeast Asia, and the single largest destination was the colony of the Dutch East Indies, now known as Indonesia. Wherever the Chinese landed they prospered, but in Indonesia, even though some families made fortunes, they never felt they quite belonged.