By Adrian Vickers
Because the Bali bombings of 2002 and the increase of political Islam, Indonesia has usually occupied media headlines. however, the background of the fourth biggest state on the earth is still really unknown. Adrian Vickers's ebook, first released in 2005, strains the historical past of an island kingdom, comprising a few 240 million humans, from the colonial interval via revolution and independence to the current. Framed round the lifestyles tale of Pramoedya Ananta Toer, Indonesia's most renowned and debatable novelist and playwright, the booklet trips in the course of the social and cultural mores of Indonesian society, targeting the studies of normal humans. during this new version, the writer brings the tale modern, revisiting his argument as to why Indonesia has but to gain its strength as a democratic state. he'll additionally learn the increase of fundamentalist Islam, which has haunted Indonesia because the fall of Suharto.
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Extra resources for A History of Modern Indonesia
The young Queen Wilhelmina, under advice from her prime minister of the Christian Anti-Revolutionary Party, proclaimed the new policy for the new century when in 1901 she formally inaugurated a benevolent ‘Ethical Policy’, intended to bring progress and prosperity to the natives, including the provision of education and other opportunities. 18 A History of Modern Indonesia Because this aim was so vague, the Policy could be interpreted in different ways: as a beacon of economic progress, with which the liberals could identify; as a means of improving the welfare of the peasantry, which socialists advocated; as a force for Christianity, to please religious parties; or as a set of general guidelines to ease the local people into the modern world.
These seventeenth-century Dutchmen set up this colony as investors in the world’s first great multinational company, the United East India Company. Batavia became the centre of its Asian trading network. Over the next 200 years, the Company acquired additional ports as trading bases and safeguarded its interests by gradually taking over surrounding territory. By 1800 the Company had been closed down, but the Dutch had achieved control over most of Java, parts of the larger island of Sumatra, the fabled eastern spice islands of Maluku (the Moluccas) and the hinterlands of various ports where they had established bases for themselves, such as Makasar on the island of Sulawesi (Celebes) and Kupang on the island of Timor.
While a Dutch resident earned what was considered a modest sum by the standards of his equivalents in other colonial systems – f 13,500 per annum (US$5,400) – the highest-paid coolies would have needed to work day and night for a year to earn f 300 in total, let alone pay tax on it. More than 80 per cent of the taxpayers of Java and Madura earned less than this. In theory the vote was given to women after a long struggle, but as a result of official stalling they never actually got to exercise that right, mainly because they did not pay tax.