Indonesian Culture

Social and religious duty has, over time, been refined to form a code of behaviour called adat or traditional law. Islam is the predominant religion of the archipelago but it’s somewhat tempered by elements of Hindu-Buddhism, adat and animism. In Java, especially, there are hundreds of places where spiritual energy is thought to be concentrated […]

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Indonesia Country Information

Indonesia, the largest archipelago and the fifth most populous nation in the world, has a total of 17,508 islands, of which about 6,000 are inhabited. Indonesia extends 3,198 miles (5,150km) between the Australian and Asian continental mainland and divides the Pacific and Indian Oceans at the Equator. 1. GENERAL INFORMATION 2. CLIMATE & WEATHER CONDITIONS […]

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Indonesian Performing Arts

Traditional Performing Arts of Indonesia The sober, majestic, and profound court arts of eastern and central Java, where Javanese is spoken, include wayang kulit shadow theatre, wayang orang unmasked dance, and wayang topeng masked dance. Shadow-puppet theatre It is uncertain whether the shadow theatre is indigenous to Java or was brought from India, but the […]

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Pre-Indonesia Period

Indonesia did not exist as yet during the Palaeocene period (70 million years BC), the Eocene period (30 million years BC), the Oligacene period (25 million years BC) and the Miocene period (12 million years BC). It is believed that Indonesia must have existed during the Pleitocene period (4 million years BC) when it was […]

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Traditional Indonesian Music

Gamelan orchestra Gamelan music is the most popular and important kind in Indonesia. Gamelan orchestras accompany all dances and dramas. Gamel means ‘to hammer’, and most of the instruments of a gamelan orchestra are struck with wooden mallets, padded sticks or hammers.The conductor of a gamelan orchestra is a drummer who is part of the […]

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Wayang Golek Theater

The Wayang Golek Theater of Java The painted wooden puppets on the preceding page are old examples from the still thriving and important folk art puppet theater of Java in Indonesia.  Although tourist shops now sell imitations of wayang golek puppets, the puppets illustrated on these pages were actually used for many years in theater […]

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Islamic Kingdoms Period

Moslem merchants from Gujarat and Persia began visiting Indonesia in the 13th Century and established trade links between this country and India and Persia. Along with trade, they propagated Islam among the Indonesians people, particularly along the coastal areas of Java, like Demak. At a later stage they even influenced and converted Hindu kings to […]

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Batik & Ikat

Batik Batik making, practiced almost exclusively on Java, involves a complex wax-resistance process in which all parts of a cloth that are not to be dyed are coated on both sides with wax before the cloth is dipped into the dye. Using a penlike wax holder called a canting, it is possible to create intricate […]

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Human Rights Report 2007

Country Reports on Human Rights Practices  – 2007 Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor – March 11, 2008 Indonesia is a multiparty democracy with a population of approximately 245 million. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono became the country’s first directly elected president in free and fair elections in 2004. The civilian authorities generally maintained […]

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Hindu Kingdoms Period

Many well-organized kingdoms with a high degree of civilization were ruled by indigenous kings who had adopted the Hindu or Buddhist religion. This explains why this period in history is called the Period of Hindu Kingdoms. It lasted from ancient times to the 16th Century AD. Because the culture and civilization, which emanated from the […]

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