In these studies, scholars from the United States and Indonesia identify some of the cultural roots of Indonesian political behavior. The authors, representing the fields of anthropology, history, and political science, explore the ways in which traditional institutions, beliefs, values, and ethnic origins affect notions of power and rebellion, influence political party affiliations, and create new modes of cultural expression.
Using two different but contemporary approaches, the authors show what can be learned about Indonesia through use of the Western concepts of "culture" and "politics." Professors Lev, Liddle, and Sartono illustrate how much can be gained from presenting Indonesian life in Western terms, while Professors Abdullah and Anderson contrast Indonesian and Western ideas. In an Afterword, Clifford Geertz reflects on the questions raised in these essays by discussing the tense relationships between Indonesian political institutions and the cultural framework in which they exist.
CLAIRE HOLT was, until her death in 1970, Senior Research Associate of the Modern Indonesia Project, Cornell University. In Indonesia she served as assistant to the late Dr. W.F. Stutterheim, the noted archaeologist and cultural historian. She lectured extensively in Europe, the Far East, and the United States on Indonesian culture, and worked as a researcher and training specialist for the US Department of State.