at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

New Releases on Indonesia


Activist Archives: Youth Culture and the Political Past in Indonesia
Doreen Lee

In Activist Archives Doreen Lee tells the origins, experiences, and legacy of the radical Indonesian student movement that helped end the thirty-two-year dictatorship in May 1998. Lee situates the revolt as the most recent manifestation of student activists claiming a political and historical inheritance passed down by earlier generations of politicized youth. Combining historical and ethnographic analysis of “Generation 98,” Lee offers rich depictions of the generational structures, nationalist sentiments, and organizational and private spaces that bound these activists together. She examines the ways the movement shaped new and youthful ways of looking, seeing, and being—found in archival documents from the 1980s and 1990s; the connections between politics and place; narratives of state violence; activists’ experimental lifestyles; and the uneven development of democratic politics on and off the street. Lee illuminates how the interaction between official history, collective memory, and performance came to define youth citizenship and resistance in Indonesia’s transition to the post-Suharto present.

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The Oil Palm Complex: Smallholders, Agribusiness and the State in Indonesia and Malaysia
Edited by Rob Cramb and John F. McCarthy

The oil palm industry has transformed rural livelihoods and landscapes across wide swathes of Indonesia and Malaysia, generating wealth along with economic, social, and environmental controversy. Who benefits and who loses from oil palm development? Can oil palm development provide a basis for inclusive and sustainable rural development?

Based on detailed studies of specific communities and plantations and an analysis of the regional political economy of oil palm, this book unpicks the dominant policy narratives, business strategies, models of land acquisition, and labour-processes. It presents the oil palm industry in Malaysia and Indonesia as a complex system in which land, labour and capital are closely interconnected. Understanding the oil palm complex is a prerequisite to developing better strategies to harness the oil palm boom for a more equitable and sustainable pattern of rural development.

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Electoral Dynamics in Indonesia: Money Politics, Patronage and Clientelism at the Grassroots
Edited by Edward Aspinall & Mada Sukmajati

How do politicians win elected office in Indonesia? To find out, research teams fanned out across the country prior to Indonesia’s 2014 legislative election to record campaign events, interview candidates and canvassers, and observe their interactions with voters. They found that at the grassroots political parties are less important than personal campaign teams and vote brokers who reach out to voters through a wide range of networks associated with religion, ethnicity, kinship, micro enterprises, sports clubs and voluntary groups of all sorts. Above all, candidates distribute patronage—cash, goods and other material benefits—to individual voters and to communities. Electoral Dynamics in Indonesia brings to light the scale and complexity of vote buying and the many uncertainties involved in this style of politics, providing an unusually intimate portrait of politics in a patronage-based system.
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Catastrophe and Regeneration in Indonesia’s Peatlands: Ecology, Economy and Society
Kosuke Mizuno (Editor), Motoko S. Fujita (Editor), and Shuichi Kawai (Editor)

The serious degradation of the vast peatlands of Indonesia since the 1990s is the proximate cause of the haze that endangers public health in Indonesian Sumatra and Borneo, and also in neighbouring Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. Moreover peatlands that have been drained and cleared for plantations are a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. This new book explains the degradation of peat soils and outlines a potential course of action to deal with the catastrophe looming over the region. Concerted action will be required to reduce peatland fires, and a successful policy needs to enhance social welfare and economic survival, support natural conservation and provide a return on investment if there is to be a sustainable society in the peatlands. This book argues that regeneration is possible through a new policy of people’s forestry that includes reforestation and rewetting peat soils. The data come from a major long-term research effort—the humanosphere project—that coordinates work done by researchers from the physical, natural and human or social sciences.

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