Being Malay in Indonesia: Histories: Hopes and Citizenship in the Riau Archipelago

Being Malay in Indonesia: Histories: Hopes and Citizenship in the Riau Archipelago

by Nicholas J. Long




In 1999, the people of Indonesia's Riau Archipelago were angry. Resentful of decades of "internal colonialism" by Mainland Sumatra, and concerned that they lacked education and skills to flourish in a globalised world, they dreamed of inhabiting a province of their own. When the post-authoritarian state committed itself to democracy and local autonomy, they lobbied vigorously and successfully for the region to be returned to its "native" Malay residents. Riau Islands Province was born in 2004. This book explores what happened next. Living in a new province created "for Malays" forced Riau Islanders to engage with thorny questions over what it meant to be Malay and how to achieve the official goal of becoming globally competitive "human resources". Putting nuanced ethnographic observations of life in the islands into a provocative dialogue with theorists ranging from Zizek to Sartre, this book explores how feelings of unsettledness and doubt came to permeate the province as a result of its very creation. Offering fresh perspectives on commerce, spirit beliefs, education and culture, Being Malay in Indonesia challenges much of the received wisdom in the anthropology of Southeast Asia and makes a powerful case for the importance of feelings, sentiments and affect in studies of local development and political change.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780824838652
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press, The
Publication date: 11/30/2013
Series: ASAA Southeast Asia Publications Series
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

List of Maps viii

List of Tables viii

List of Illustrations ix

Acknowledgements xi

Chapter 1 Introduction 1

Chapter 2 Provincial Capital 30

Chapter 3 Poisoned Histories 63

Chapter 4 Marketplaces 98

Chapter 5 Neighbourhoods 127

Chapter 6 Hauntings 148

Chapter 7 The Human Resources Crisis 173

Chapter 8 Achieving Malayness 206

Conclusion 242

Glossary 252

Bibliography 256

About the Author 274

Index 275

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