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Indonesia

Kartini and ‘Kartini’

On the many meanings of Hari Kartini, Indonesia's annual celebration of its most famous colonial-era feminist thinker.

Ghosts in the machine

An in-depth investigation into the land deals behind the downfall of one of Indonesia's most senior judges.

Lost in Translation: Jawa Pos

Foreign correspondent and historian Frank Palmos reflects on his first translating job in Java in 1961.

Desperation in the Indonesian diaspora

The global success of a motorbike gang with roots in the Netherlands’ Indonesian community is indicative of the socioeconomic marginalisation of many Indonesian migrants.

Sukmawati’s saving grace

When you’re accused of blasphemy, displays of humility and oligarchic pedigree may be the best defence.

Prabowo didn’t just announce a presidential run

A supposed announcement of his candidacy actually reemphasises how ambivalent Prabowo is about fighting Jokowi again.

The big canvas

A new book on West Sumatran 'angkot' reveals the complex tensions between tradition and modernity in contemporary Minangkabau society

Jokowinomics vs reality: a look at PLN

SOEs are expected to do ever more for Jokowi's infrastructure push, but politics dictates they forgo revenue to offer subsidised goods. Who ends up with the bill?

Documentation, Restoration, and Repatriation? Reflections on a dance film screening for the ‘Bali 1928’ project

Nien Yuan Cheng reflects on the film screening and lecture, "Gender, Crossdressing and Androgyny in Balinese Dance", conducted by ethnomusicologist Edward Herbst under the aegis of the Bali 1928 repatriation project.

The Sufi poet and the peculiar whale (part one)

Hamzah of Barus was the foremost Malay poet of the 16th century, whose work draws deeply from Sufi imagery and philosophy.

Jokowi shares the blame for MD3 debacle

The MD3 saga lays bare not only the DPR's attempt to shield itself from public accountability, but the dysfunctionality of governance under Jokowi.

Perspectives on the Past at New Mandala

Welcoming the University of Sydney's Southeast Asian history bloggers to New Mandala.

Bulldozers and palms in Aceh

Snapshots of the new socio-ecological dynamics in post-reconstruction Aceh.

The “orang gila” scare in Indonesia

What's behind a fresh panic about attacks on Islamic figures at the hands of "crazy people"?

Indonesia’s Constitutional Court and public opinion

Data suggest public opinion and civil society do influence judges. That's both good and bad for the quality of their decisions.

Indonesia’s minority report

Indonesian law recognises both international human rights norms and 'religious values'. The latter are increasingly taking precedence.

Education on the fringe in Indonesia

A snapshot of the problems of Indonesia's education system from highland Papua.

UNESCO heritage-lists Indonesian wooden boat building

Maritime historian Jeffrey Mellefont on why UNESCO has recognised the cultural significance of South Sulawesi boat-building.

Terrorist arbitrage in Southeast Asia

Jihadists know how to take advantage of the unique space for mobilisation offered by the Indonesia–Malaysia–Philippines triborder area. Governments are still catching up.

Islamic leaders don’t get their ‘copy and paste’ of Jakarta

Details on a falling out between pro-Anies Baswedan political parties and the religious leaders behind the 212 movement.

Disinformation and democracy in Indonesia

Crackdowns on ‘fake news’ producers aren’t enough—Indonesian voters need better journalism and greater digital literacy.

Piety, politics, and the popularity of Felix Siauw

An ethnic Chinese convert to hardline Islam stands out in Indonesia’s crowded Islamic preaching market.

‘Religion’ and ‘belief’ in Indonesia: what’s the difference?

In insisting that “animist” faiths be given a lower status than “religion”, Islamic leaders ignore how the false divide between them was constructed in the first place.

Jokowi’s military reshuffle is all about 2019

Jokowi moved quickly to shift a controversial armed forces chief into retirement. The 2019 elections were at the front of his mind.