Islam in Indonesia

Public Islam in Indonesia: Piety, Politics, and Identity
Noorhaidi Hasan

In recent years, ongoing democratization in Indonesia has enabled the rise of a form of Islam that is more sympathetic to the basic democratic principle of individual freedom. As a result, many Islamic symbols have lost their strictly religious meanings in favor of new pragmatic and political undertones. Combining approaches from political science and anthropology, Noorhaidi Hasan explores this phenomenon and the extent to which public Islam could represent a new future for the nation, one that moves beyond the simple opposition of state versus religion.
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A History of Islam in Indonesia: Unity in Diversity
Carool Kersten

Located on the eastern periphery of the historical Muslim world, as a political entity Indonesia is barely a century old. Yet with close to a quarter of a billion followers of Islam it is now the largest and most populous Muslim country in the world. As the greatest political power in Southeast Asia, and a growing player on the world scene, Indonesia presents itself as a bridge country between Asia, the wider Muslim world and the West.

In this survey Carool Kersten presents the Islamisation of Indonesia from the first evidence of the acceptance of Islam by indigenous peoples in the late thirteenth century until the present day. He provides comprehensive insight into the different roles played by Islam in Indonesia throughout history, including the importance of Indian Ocean networks for connecting Indonesians with the wider Islamic world, the religion’s role as a means of resistance and tool for nation building, and postcolonial attempts to forge an ‘Indonesian Islam’.

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Mainstreaming Islam in Indonesia: Television, Identity, and the Middle Class
Inaya Rakhmani

This cutting edge book considers the question of Islam and commercialisation in Indonesia, a majority Muslim, non-Arab country. Revealing the cultural heterogeneity behind rising Islamism in a democratizing society, it highlights the case of television production and the identity of its viewers. Drawing from detailed case studies from across islands in the diverse archipelagic country, it contends that commercial television has democratised the relationship between Islamic authority and the Muslim congregation, and investigates the responses of the heterogeneous middle class towards commercial da’wah. By taking the case of commercial television, the book argues that what is occurring in Indonesia is less related to Islamic ideologisation than it is a symbiosis between Muslim middle class anxieties and the workings of market forces. It examines the web of relationships that links Islamic expression, commercial television, and national imagination, arguing that the commercialisation of Islam through national television discloses unrequited expectations of equality between ethnic and religious groups as well as between regions.
Gender and Islam in Indonesian Cinema
Alicia Izharuddin

This book presents a historical overview of the Indonesian film industry, the relationship between censorship and representation, and the rise of Islamic popular culture. It considers scholarship on gender in Indonesian cinema through the lens of power relations. With key themes such as nationalism, women’s rights, polygamy, and terrorism which have preoccupied local filmmakers for decades, Indonesia cinema resonates with the socio-political changes and upheavals in Indonesia’s modern history and projects images of the nation through the debates on gender and Islam. The text also sheds light on broader debates and questions about contemporary Islam and gender construction in contemporary Indonesia. Offering cutting edge accounts of the production of Islamic cinema, this new book considers gendered dimensions of Islamic media creation which further enrich the representations of the ‘religious’ and the ‘Islamic’ in the everyday lives of Muslims in South East Asia.

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