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Indonesia

Indonesia Book List

Cover of 'Camp Life Is Paradise for Freddy'

Camp Life Is Paradise for Freddy
A Childhood in the Dutch East Indies, 1933–1946
By Fred Lanzing
· Translation by Marjolijn de Jager
· Introduction by William H. Frederick

In this lyrical but controversial memoir of his childhood in a Japanese internment camp for Dutch colonialists during World War II, Lanzing enlivens ongoing discussions of the politics of memory and the powerful—if contentious—contributions that subjective accounts make to historiography and the legacies of the past.

Cover of 'Gongs and Pop Songs'

Gongs and Pop Songs
Sounding Minangkabau in Indonesia
By Jennifer A. Fraser

Scholarship on the musical traditions of Indonesia has long focused on practices from Java and Bali, including famed gamelan traditions, at the expense of the wide diversity of other musical forms within the archipelago. Jennifer A. Fraser counters this tendency by exploring a little-known gong tradition from Sumatra called talempong, long associated with people who identify themselves as Minangkabau.

Cover of 'Land for the People'

Land for the People
The State and Agrarian Conflict in Indonesia
Edited by Anton Lucas and Carol Warren

Half of Indonesia’s massive population still lives on farms, and for these tens of millions of people the revolutionary promise of land reform remains largely unfulfilled. The Basic Agrarian Law, enacted in the wake of the Indonesian revolution, was supposed to provide access to land and equitable returns for peasant farmers. But fifty years later, the law’s objectives of social justice have not been achieved.

Cover of 'Power, Change, and Gender Relations in Rural Java'

Power, Change, and Gender Relations in Rural Java
A Tale of Two Villages
By Ann R. Tickamyer and Siti Kusujiarti

Women’s status in rural Java can appear contradictory to those both inside and outside the culture. In some ways, women have high status and broad access to resources, but other situations suggest that Javanese women lack real power and autonomy. Javanese women have major responsibilities in supporting their families and controlling household finances. They may also own and manage their own property.

Cover of 'Realizing the Dream of R. A. Kartini'

Realizing the Dream of R. A. Kartini
Her Sisters’ Letters from Colonial Java
Edited by Joost J. Coté

Realizing the Dream of R. A. Kartini: Her Sisters’ Letters from Colonial Java presents a unique collection of documents reflecting the lives, attitudes, and politics of four Javanese women in the early twentieth century. Joost J. Coté translates the correspondence between Raden Ajeng Kartini, Indonesia’s first feminist, and her sisters, revealing for the first time her sisters’ contributions in defining and carrying out her ideals.

Finalist for the 2006 Harry J. Benda Prize in Southeast Asian Studies
Cover of 'Power Plays'

Power Plays
Wayang Golek Puppet Theater of West Java
By Andrew N. Weintraub

Based on ethnographic fieldwork spanning twenty years, Power Plays is the first scholarly book in English on wayang golek, the Sundanese rod-puppet theater of West Java. It is a detailed and lively account of the ways in which performers of this major Asian theatrical form have engaged with political discourses in Indonesia. Wayang golek has shaped, as well, the technological and commercial conditions of art and performance in a modernizing society.

Cover of 'Islam and the State in Indonesia'

Islam and the State in Indonesia
By Bahtiar Effendy

Since the unraveling of Western colonialism in the mid-twentieth century, Muslim nations have struggled to reconcile Islamic ideas and political movements with the state. In Indonesia, in particular, Islam and the state have long been at an impasse. While the ritual dimension of Islam has been allowed to flourish, political Islam has been defeated by various means.

Cover of 'Tensions of Empire'

Tensions of Empire
Japan and Southeast Asia in the Colonial and Postcolonial World
By Ken’ichi Goto
· Edited by Paul H. Kratoska

Beginning with the closing decade of European colonial rule in Southeast Asia and covering the wartime Japanese empire and its postwar disintegration, Tensions of Empire focuses on the Japanese in Southeast Asia, Indonesians in Japan, and the legacy of the war in Southeast Asia. It also examines Japanese perceptions of Southeast Asia and the lingering ambivalence toward Japanese involvement in Asia and toward the war in particular.

Short listed for the 2007 New South Wales Premier's Translation Prize
Cover of 'Secrets Need Words'

Secrets Need Words
Indonesian Poetry, 1966–1998
Edited by Harry Aveling
· Translation by Harry Aveling

The period from 1966 to 1999 represents a distinct era in Indonesian history. Throughout the “New Order” regime of President Suharto, the policies of economic development and political stability were dominant. However, the public opinion of personal expression was consistently under suspicion, and indeed dissent was severely punished. Secrets Need Words traces the development of Indonesian poetry throughout this entire period.

Cover of 'Television, Nation, and Culture in Indonesia'

Television, Nation, and Culture in Indonesia
By Philip Kitley

The culture of television in Indonesia began with its establishment in 1962 as a public broadcasting service. From that time, through the deregulation of television broadcasting in 1990 and the establishment of commercial channels, television can be understood, Philip Kitley argues, as a part of the New Order's national culture project, designed to legitimate an idealized Indonesian national cultural identity.

Cover of 'Theater and Martial Arts in West Sumatra'

Theater and Martial Arts in West Sumatra
Randai and Silek of the Minangkabau
By Kirstin Pauka

Randai, the popular folk theater tradition of the Minangkabau ethnic group in West Sumatra, has evolved to include influences of martial arts, storytelling, and folk songs. Theater and Martial Arts in West Sumatra describes the origin, development, and cultural background of randai and highlights two recent developments: the emergence of female performers and modern staging techniques.

Cover of 'Imagining Indonesia'

Imagining Indonesia
Cultural Politics and Political Culture
Edited by Jim Schiller and Barbara Martin-Schiller

Increased interest in Indonesian culture and politics is reflected in this work's effort to advance and reject various notions of what it means to be Indonesian. It also addresses perceptions of how Indonesia's citizens and state officials should interact.

Cover of 'Eight Prison Camps'

Eight Prison Camps
A Dutch Family in Japanese Java
By Dieuwke Wendelaar Bonga

Eldest daughter of eight children, the author grew up in Surakarta, Java, in what is now Indonesia. In the months following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, however, Dutch nationals were rounded up by Japanese soldiers and put in internment camps. Her father and brother were sent to separate men’s camps, leaving the author, her mother, and the five younger children in the women’s camp.

Cover of 'From Jail to Jail'

From Jail to Jail
By Tan Malaka
· Translation by Helen Jarvis
· Introduction by Helen Jarvis

From Jail to Jail is the political autobiography of a central though enigmatic figure of the Indonesian Revolution. Variously labeled a communist, Trotskyite, and nationalist, Tan Malaka managed, during the several decades of his political activity, to run afoul of nearly every political group and faction involved in the Indonesian struggle for independence.