The Australia-Netherlands Research Collaboration (ANRC)

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Past events organised or supported by ANRC

18 June-5 July 2012
Reading Dutch for Historical Research

location: South Durras, NSW
Presenter: Dr Bruce Donaldson

Applications are invited for a limited number of places in an intensive residential course ‘Reading Dutch for Historical Research’, to be held at South Durras (near Batemans Bay), New South Wales, from Monday 18 June to Thursday 5 July 2012.

The course is intended for those needing a working knowledge of written Dutch for professional purposes, including the study of Asian history. The course is open to academics, professionals and current and intending postgraduate students.

Further details...

5 December 2011, 04:00pm
Carl Heinrich Stratz and Occidental Women’s Bodies: European Imperialism, Medical Science and Physical Anthropology in the Dutch East Indies

location: Faculty of Science Meeting Room, Carslaw 450, University of Sydney
Presenter: Professor Frances Gouda, University of Amsterdam

“Every human being lives a double life: one as an individual, the other as member of a gender. The individual life begins at birth and ends with death. The gendered life (geslachtsleven), in contrast, begins with the onset of sexual maturity and ends with the termination of the ability to procreate.” These opening sentences were written in 1908 by the controversial dr. Carl Heinrich Stratz in Health Science for Women (Gezondheidsleer voor de Vrouw). He was a gynecologist, amateur physical anthropologist and dilettante art connoisseur with a sophisticated medical training at, among others, the University of Heidelberg in Germany. From 1887 to 1892 he worked as a military medical officer in the Dutch East Indies. Upon his return to Europe during the early 1890s, Dr. Stratz began to publish a series of books, profusely illustrated with black-and-white photographs of naked female bodies, with titles such as Women in Java, The Racial Beauty of Women, and Women’s Clothing. Stratz’s publications constituted an earnest scientific effort not only to identify a physiological basis for the essential differences between Occidential and Oriental women’s beauty but were also part of an incipient “science of race” in late 19th century Germany. Dr. Stratz has been rightly dismissed by American anthropologist Ann Laura Stoler and Dutch historian Linda Rodenburg as a voyeur and a semi-pornographic racial taxonomist. His work merits further critical analysis, however, if only because some of his comparative books on Western and Asian women’s bodies–with their alluring photographs of nude girls and women–reached a 40th edition towards the outbreak of World War II.
1 December 2011, 12:00pm
Anne Frank and Sukarno as Icons of History in Divided Dutch Memories of World War II

location: W1010 (Tenth floor west, Menzies Building) Monash University (Clayton)
Presenter: Professor Frances Gouda, University of Amsterdam

Upon completing a degree in education in 1971 at the Rijkspedagogisch Academie in Utrecht, the Netherlands, where she was born and raised, Frances Gouda (1950) studied at the University of Washington in Seattle WA in the United States, earning BA, MA and PhD degrees in history (1980). After teaching at Wellesley College (Wellesley, MA), The American University and The George Washington University in Washington D.C., she returned to the Netherlands in 1999 and is now a professor of (post)colonial history and gender studies at the Universiteit van Amsterdam. She served as post-doctoral researcher at Harvard University's Center for European Studies in 1983-84 and as a fellow of the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars in 1990-1991; she has received grants and fellowships from, among others, The Social Science Research Council, The Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, The American Council of Learned Societies, The Fulbright Scholars Program, The European Science Foundation, The Rockefeller Archives Center and the American Philosophical Society.

Her dissertation and initial research project focused on the social and intellectual history of nineteenth-century France and the Netherlands, which resulted in a book entitled Poverty and Political Culture: the Rhetoric of Social Welfare in the Netherlands and France, 1815-1853 (1994). Her subsequent scholarly work has analysed the Dutch colonial history of Indonesia, yielding a book on Dutch Culture Overseas: Colonial Practice in the Netherlands-Indies, 1900-1942 (originally published in 1995; Equinox Publishers in Jakarta issued a new edition in 2008 whereas a commercial publisher in Jakarta, P.T. Serambi Ilmu Semesta, brought out an Indonesian translation in 2007). In 2002, she published a monograph on the American role in Indonesia's decolonisation, entitled American Visions of the Dutch East Indies/Indonesia: US Foreign Policy and Indonesian Nationalism, 1920-1949, which also came out in 2009 in an edition in bahasa Indonesia with the title Indonesia Merdeka Karena Amerika?. Gouda maintains a serious interest in the issues of gender, power and ethnic difference in the history of European colonialism in Asia and Africa, and she has edited a collection of essays with Julia Clancy-Smith on Domesticating the Empire: Race, Gender, and Family Life in French and Dutch Colonialism (1998) as well as Mixed Feelings: Gender, Ethnicity and Postcolonial History (2007, in Dutch), In addition, she has served as co-editor of collections of essays entitled Gender and the Historical Body (2008), Gender and Power in Islamic History (2009) and Gender and Madness in Historical Perspective (2010). In recent years, Gouda has been engaged in research on medical history and public health in the Dutch East Indies and other colonial societies in Asia during the first half of the twentieth century as part of an ongoing project entitled The Politics of Laissez-Mourir: Governmentality and Public Health in the Dutch East Indies, the U.S. Philippines and Travancore (British-India, 1915-1942.

While visiting Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney in Australia during the period November 26 - December 10, 2011, she will present a paper on "Anne Frank and Sukarno as Icons of History in Divided Dutch Memories of World War II" and workshops on "Empire's Progeny: Gender and Ethnicity in the Dutch East Indies" as well as "Carl Heinrich Stratz and Oriental and Occidental Women’s Bodies: European Imperialism, Medical Science and Physical Anthropology in the Dutch East Indies and Elsewhere in Colonial Asia."

29 November 2011, 03:00pm
Anne Frank and Sukarno as icons in Dutch historical memory of World War II

location: Law Link Theatre, Law Building, Fellows Road, ANU
Presenter: Professor Frances Gouda, University of Amsterdam

Since the late 1940s, Anne Frank and Sukarno have functioned as “icons of memory” in the divergent ways in which World War II in Europe and Southeast Asia has been commemorated in the public imagination and historical literature of the contemporary Netherlands. The concept of “icon of memory” will be introduced rather than the notion of “site of memory” (lieux de mémoire) because it is less fraught with nostalgia – whether of a restorative, reflective or feigned variety – that might be projected on to more tangible places of commemoration.

Both Anne Frank and Sukarno have emerged as icons of memory in the Netherlands since the early 1950s through paradoxical patterns of repetition and omission, making them not only sufficiently stable but also flexible enough to function in changing historical contexts. Their iconic role in Dutch memorial practices, however, have yielded diametrically opposed consequences. Despite heated debates about the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands as an epic struggle between good and evil – versus a recent revisionist trend aiming to depict World War II as a murky grey past characterized by mostly apolitical and opportunistic behavior – the commemoration of Anne Frank has functioned as a locus of consensus or an “Angle of Repose.” In contrast, the still palpable memories of Sukarno as a willing collaborator of the Japanese occupation of the Dutch East Indies during 1942-45 have produced a “post-colonial deficit” by constructing Indonesian nationalism as a Japanese invention imposed on the indigenous population of the Dutch East Indies through the singular agency of Sukarno.

Upon completing a degree in education in 1971, Frances Gouda studied in the United States at the University of Washington in Seattle, earning BA, MA and PhD degrees in history (1980). After teaching at Wellesley College, The American University and The George Washington University in Washington D.C., she returned to the Netherlands in 1999 and is now a professor of (post) colonial history and gender studies at the Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Light refreshments will be served after this lecture. RSVP details on link below

Further details...

28 November 2011, 02:00pm
Gender and Ethnicity in Research on Colonial History - a seminar for Postgraduate Students focusing on research techniques

location: Seminar Room A, HC Coombs Building (9), Fellows Road, ANU
Presenter: Professor Frances Gouda, University of Amsterdam

Ever since the important work of Jean Gelman Taylor (1983) and Ann Laura Stoler (1991, 1995) on interracial sexuality appeared, many historians have been preoccupied with the different ways in which colonial societies in the past defined and configured relations of power and subservience on the basis of gender & ethnicity. Why was métissage (miscegenation) in French Indochina around the year 1900 constructed as an urgent social issue among policymakers and civil servants, whereas in French colonial culture in Algeria it hardly figured as political problem? What were the implications of the existence of the category “Eurasians” in British-India’s censuses and conversely, why was it significant that census takers in the Dutch East Indies classified most people of bi-racial descent as “European?”

In this seminar, Frances Gouda intends to address the differential manner in which diverse colonial societies constructed different linkages between (white-skinned male) command and the subordination of white, hybrid and indigenous women. She will also explore the ways in which white women, sometimes voluntarily and at other times reluctantly, came to be positioned as symbolic protectors of the ontological wholeness of the colonial system and defenders of the putative superiority of European culture and morality in colonial Asia during the modern era.

Afternoon tea will be served after this seminar

RSVP to by 4.00pm Friday 25 November

Further details...

13 July-15 July 2010
Indigenous peoples and natural resource management: Towards new forms of governance

location: Denpasar
Workshop convened by Dr Gerard Persoon from Leiden University, Dr Carol Warren from Murdoch University and Prof Sulistyowati Irianto from University of Indonesia.
Outcome Summary
The workshop was convened to examine the present status of indigenous peoples’ rights over resources in the Philippines and Indonesia. Indigenous legal rights over resources have received increasing international recognition, and it is now important to examine both the ways in which this recognition has translated into action on the part of local communities, governments, NGOs and companies and to assess the relevance of current academic theories on implementation of newly recognized rights.

The term ‘indigenous peoples’ is established in international discourse and in official documents in the Philippines. The Philippines Indigenous Peoples Rights Act was adopted in 1997. In the Philippines, the Indigenous Peoples Rights’ law has led to new forms of self-organization, and actual involvement in natural resource management, but governmental officials often continued to play a crucial, restricting role. There is conflicting evidence of the impact of internationally granted rights (for instance through UN Conventions), national laws and Corporate Social Responsibility. Law and practice in these areas often fail to connect and may contradict each other. In Indonesia, the government refuses to use the term on the grounds that it should not differentiate between various types of citizens. Local organizations in Indonesia deal with this issue in various ways. Some strongly emphasize their indigenous status vis-à-vis migrant communities, while others accept the arguments of common Indonesian nationality. Although the legal framework differs from the Philippines, the tension between different levels of law remains.

The indigenous rights discourse is currently being transformed by two developments. First, as a result of increased education, improved transport facilities and access to modern media, the younger generation in indigenous communities no longer defines its future in the same terms with respect to natural resource management as their parents have done. Members of the younger generation often aim for new types of futures outside their home territory, and their relationship to the sustainability and indigenous rights discourses has become complex.

Second is the emergence of Payment for Environmental Services (PES) as an economic policy instrument with major implications for indigenous peoples. PES includes compensation for carbon storage, through the so-called REDD+ programme, for which enormous funds are being made available. Australia and Norway are among the major initiators of these programmes in Indonesia, while in the Philippines programmes are also being developed. The programmes have the potential both to bring benefits to indigenous peoples and to disempower them.

28 June-30 June 2010
Cultural Performance in post-New Order Indonesia: New structures, scenes, meanings

location: Yogyakarta
Workshop convened by Prof Barbara Hatley from University of Tasmania, Dr Bart Barendregt from Leiden University and Dr Stanislaus Sunardi from Sanata Dharma University.
Outcome Summary
The focus of this workshop was contemporary cultural performances in Indonesia – theatre and music, as well as film, digital and video arts. Participants were asked to document contemporary trends in particular regions or specific genres, in their social, political and cultural contexts. Performance activities take place today in Indonesia in conditions seemingly very different from those of previous decades. In contrast to the long period of New Order control, today there is no single, authoritarian state prescribing ideological values and constructing national identity, setting the agenda for the arts, and providing its funding. Instead, under the regional autonomy administrative system, local-level decision-making and funding allocation has been devolved to the regions; local interests vie for political power, and democraticising ideology encourages the expression of a diverse range of local identities. Meanwhile, as centralised political structures and nationalist discourse have attenuated, global cultural influence has flourished, through the expanded, liberalised mass media and new technologies such as digital recording and the internet.

In some locations, and genres, under these conditions cultural performances appear to be thriving. In Central Java public spectacles and community shows are lively and participatory, a variety of alternate arts spaces have opened up, and new performance ‘festivals’ are booming. Contemporary performers mix Javanese regional genres with modern, international styles and technologies, and work together with community groups. Key features of this activity seem to be an emphasis on locally-produced art, and on community. ‘The local’ may indicate the traditional cultural forms of a particular area, or simply performance activities that residents practise today. ‘Community’ may refer both to members of a physical neighbourhood, and to groups of people with shared interests and experiences. In all cases performances appear to be consciously ‘constructed’, rather than representing an ongoing, ‘traditional’ cultural activity. Such activities would seem to be shaped by the focus on local identity and community participation promoted by the context of regional autonomy and democratisation. But just what the fit is and how these processes work remains to be explored.

The commentators on the papers raised a number of thought-provoking issues, stimulating lively discussion. The appropriateness of ‘post-New Order’ as a marker of periodisation was questioned. ‘Post Cold War’ was suggested, as a term facilitating comparison with other countries in the region; the alternative ‘post-authoritarian’ was then proposed and appeared widely supported. The concept of ‘community’ was critiqued by some as utopian nostalgia and simply a fashionable label for arts activities: Singapore-based cultural theorist Chua Beng Huat argued, however, that it represents a vital alternate discourse to capitalism, after the discrediting of socialism. The relationship of capitalism and the media to performance was debated: is capitalism the all- pervasive enemy or a source of opportunity to be used strategically by performers and arts workers? The concept of ‘local identity’ was problematised: some expressed concern over its essentialist implications, while one commentator suggested that contemporary Indonesian performers, in freely appropriating and blending diverse local and international performance genres, may be expressing an absence of a fixed sense of identity under the conditions of global liquid modernity.

Further details...
14 June-3 July 2010
Reading Dutch for Historical Research course

location: Kangaroo Island, SA

16 participants attended the intensive residential course. They ranged from Masters student to Professor level and included Library and Archival professionals. The instructor for the course was Dr Bruce Donaldson, formerly of the University of Melbourne, author of the standard text Colloquial Dutch and other language texts. Participants in the course received instruction in reading Dutch historical texts, especially from the period 1850-1950 with the aim of completing students being able to read complex academic and bureaucratic Dutch texts with the aid of a dictionary. The course was supported by a grant from the Nederlandse Taalunie, the international organization supporting the worldwide teaching of Dutch.

22 March-23 March 2010
Studying 'spaces of non-existence': Methodological concerns

location: Perth
Workshop convened by Dr Ian Wilson from Murdoch University, Dr Barak Kalir from University of Amsterdam and Mr Luky Djani from Indonesia Corruption Watch.
Outcome Summary
The workshop discussion revolved around difficulties that fieldworkers face when studying spaces of non-existence. Some of the participants, especially those who study borderlands, pointed out that a distinction should be made between “spaces of non-existence” in the legal-cultural sense and in the geographical-material sense. ” According to Coutin who coined the term, “spaces of non-existence” is used in order to describe a space of erasure of personhood, invisibility, exclusion, repression, exploitation, and violence. The concept is thus meant to capture a socio-legal site of people who do not “count”; something which approximates Agamben’s bare-life. At the same time, the borderland is very much a fixed geographical space whose materiality is undisputed. While the situation at a borderland can develop into a “space of non-existence” for certain groups under certain conditions, there is nothing inevitable in the characteristics of such settings that leads to it. An examination should be made of whether the situation on the ground fits such a conceptualization of “spaces of non-existence”. Never equate any particular geographic site with this definition. The multiple difficulties of studying “spaces of non-existence” were explored in the workshop. Two such major issues are access and ethics. This workshop discussion will continue with a second meeting in Amsterdam in November 2010.
8 February-13 February 2010
Melanesian languages on the edge of Asia: past, present and future

location: Manokwari
Workshop convened by Prof Nicholas Evans from The Australian National University, Dr Marian Klamer from Leiden University and Dr Wayan Arka from Universitas Udayana.
Outcome Summary
This workshop brought together scholars united by an interest in the thousand or more Melanesian languages spoken in New Guinea and surrounding islands, and with a particular focus on the age-old contacts connecting Melanesian languages to Southeast Asia. Scholars came from the Netherlands, Australia, Indonesia, Germany, Spain, Japan, Switzerland, France, Canada and the US.

It was held at Universitas Negeri Papua (Unipa) in Manokwari, West Papua, a particularly appropriate venue given the increasingly rapid rate with which Melanesian languages are yielding to Indonesian, but also given the rapidly developing interest by Melanesians in researching and maintaining their languages. Papers at the workshop covered a wide range of themes, including anthropological linguistics, ethnomusicology, psycholinguistics, educational linguistics, the role of Melayu Papua and local vernaculars in education, alongside core linguistic topics of language description and historical linguistics. The conference was given extra salience halfway through its week-long program by the launch of CELD, the new Centre of Endangered Language Documentation, at Unipa during the conference, attended by the Rector of Unipa and the Unesco Program Representative for Culture in Indonesia. A special one-day workshop on the final Saturday inducted local and visiting linguists in linguistic field methods, working with three speakers of Ireres, a language spoken not far from Manokwari but not previously reported as existing.

A publication of selected papers from the workshop, including sound and video files, will be appearing with the refereed online journal Language Documentation & Conservation. The success of the conference was such that a follow-up is planned for 11-15 February 2013, to be held at Uncen, Jayapura.

Further details...
19 January-22 January 2010
Indonesian urban kampongs: targets of state policy or abandoned zones: an anthropological-historical enquiry into the state, social inequality, and urban space

location: Surabaya
Workshop convened by Dr Freek Colombijn from VU University Amsterdam, Dr Joost Coté from Deakin University and Mr Purnawan Basundoro from Universitas Airlangga.
Outcome Summary
This workshop built on two previous workshops on Indonesian cities, held in Surabaya and Leiden. The theme of this workshop was the way kampongs have historically been constructed as a unit of policy analysis. Under each political regime, a plethora of professionals and bureaucrats have targeted kampongs for their policies. Conversely, kampongs have also constituted abandoned zones, from which adequate attention from professionals, bureaucrats and the state have been withdrawn. One documentary was shown and 24 papers were presented in Indonesian and English. The participants also went on a kampong tour through two neighbourhoods, continued to two other points of interest in the evening. Participants came from Indonesian, Australian and Dutch universities and from Indonesian NGOs. Some were at the start of their career, others were mid-career or seniors. This mix of background ensured interesting and refreshing encounters. The key conclusion drawn at this conference is that kampongs are NOT the messy places and source of social nuisance as so often depicted by authorities. Kampongs must be considered something positive and meaningful and not chaotic and senseless. Diversity brings kampongs alive.
15 January-17 January 2010
Human security and religious certainty in Southeast Asia

location: Chiang Mai
Workshop convened by Prof Oscar Salemink from VU University Amsterdam, Dr Philip Taylor from The Australian National University and Dr Chayan Vaddhanaphuti from Chiang Mai University
Outcome Summary
Throughout Southeast Asia the upsurge of public ritual and religious practice links this-worldly economic, political and existential concerns with transcendental beliefs. This workshop brought together around forty scholars from Asia, Australia, Europe who explored whether, and how, the religious upsurge can be interpreted as compensation for the risks, uncertainties, opaqueness and unpredictability arising from the neoliberalization of everyday life in Southeast Asia. In so doing, the 23 papers by senior and junior scholars linked existential concerns with a notion of ‘human security from below’. The workshop opened with a keynote by Peter van der Veer on ‘Uncertainty, Risk and Religion in Asia’, in which he situated the key themes of the conference within Asia at large. The papers were discussed in sessions on ‘Mitigating Risk through Religious and Ritual Practice’; ‘Engaging risk through ritual’; and ‘Constructing Religious Certainty in Situations of Insecurity and Risk’.

A number of noteworthy points were made in the workshop. The modern category of ‘risk’ involves decision-making over ‘mitigation’ or ‘engagement’, hence involves agency and myriad possibilities. Religious certainty could be a way to deal with insecurity and to mitigate risk, but religious or ritual practice could also facilitate risk-taking behavior. And sometimes, risk-taking can be an ‘anti-religious’ statement. Another point, predicated on skepticism regarding the ‘postmodernization’ of religion, noted that religion is performed and enacted, but we have to keep in mind that religion continues to provide meaning to people in fast-changing contexts. Religious and ritual practices often serve to (re)construct and negotiate social and cultural boundaries. Religion thus becomes an idiom for power – both in the form of cultivation, discipline and empowerment. Thus the religious upsurge could be interpreted as the ‘religionization’ of identity politics and of public discourse. A fourth point that was often emphasized concerned the comparison between insular and mainland Southeast Asia, the similarities and differences in religion and otherwise.

Further details...

5 October-7 October 2009
Culture and the Nation: Arts in the shadow of Lekra 1950 – 1965

location: Jakarta
Workshop convened by Prof Henk Schulte Nordholt from KITLV & University of Amsterdam and Dr Jennifer Lindsay from The Australian National University
Outcome Summary
This was the second of two workshops examining Indonesia’s cultural history from 1950-1965. It followed Indonesia’s Cultural Traffic Abroad 1950-1965 that was held in Leiden in April 2009. The first workshop focussed on Indonesia’s cultural interaction with the outside world, while Culture and the Nation: Arts in Indonesia 1950-1965 examined cultural activities inside Indonesia over the same period. There were 23 participants from different career stages and ranging widely in age and expertise representing four Australian, three Dutch and nine Indonesian universities or institutions. There were participants from the first workshop as well as Indonesian cultural actors who had performed in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. Topics discussed included the activities of cultural organizations (LEKRA, LESBUMI, HSBI and LKN), cultural life in centres beyond Jakarta (Medan, Makassar, Bali, Malang), and new choreography and music of the period. Overall, the project has unearthed new data and new approaches to the 1950-1965 period, bringing to the fore subjects that have evaded attention to date and highlighting a fluid openness to ideas and cultural models in the first decade and a half of Indonesia’s nationhood. A collected volume of essays from the workshops, to be published in English and Indonesian language editions, is now in preparation.
28 September-30 September 2009
Growing Up in Indonesia: Experience and Diversity in Youth Transitions

location: The Australian National University, Canberra
Workshop convened by Prof Kathryn Robinson from The Australian National University, Prof Patricia Spyer from Leiden University and Dr Pujo Semedi Hargo Yuwono from Gadjah Mada University
Outcome Summary
How do young Indonesians view and experience the world? They have anxieties that are typical of youth in all modern societies, but those anxieties are filtered through the prism of Indonesia’s particular circumstances. Young Indonesians today are more urban than any previous generation and they have more access to education, factors which are especially important in shaping inter-generational relationships. Surveys suggest that they aspire to ‘the good life’ that is oriented to family and affective relationships and are more cautious than other youth communities about risky behavior. Ideas of masculinity and femininity are strongly conditioned by Indonesia’s history and cultures, but also subject to external influences. Young Indonesians call themselves ‘remaja’, but this concept does not always match exactly with English-language ideas of ‘youth’. This workshop was a pioneering attempt to develop an understanding of the contemporary youth experience in Indonesia. Although there is a growing literature about youth, especially in constructionist frameworks, we still have relatively little work that captures youthful voices concerning their own experience.
The papers were mostly case studies from across Indonesia, and from a range of social settings representing the diversity of experience of adolescents in terms of gender, class, educational experience, whether they live at home or not, and relation to the labour market.

1 - 3 August 2009
Workshop convened by Prof Lenore Lyons from University of Western Australia, Dr Michele Ford from University of Sydney, Prof Willem van Schendel from University of Amsterdam and Dr Riwanto Tirtosudarmo from Research Center for Society and Culture, Indonesian Institute of Sciences
Labour Migration and Trafficking: Policy Making at the Border
held at Universitas Kebangsaan Malaysia
Outcome Summary
This workshop explored the tangled connection between international labour migration and the global concern with the trafficking of people. There were 41 participants. Since the signing of the UN Trafficking Protocol in 2000, countries of origin and destination alike have faced increasing pressure to ratify the Trafficking Protocol and to demonstrate that they comply with minimum standards outlined in the annual Trafficking in Persons Report prepared by the US State Department. Countries that do not comply are subject to sanctions, including the termination of non-humanitarian aid, non trade-related assistance and US opposition to assistance from international financial institutions. At the same time, trafficking and smuggling, as core issues identified in the UN Convention on Transnational Crime, are linked with measures to address global terrorism in the heightened security environment post 9/11 and governments are encouraged to take a strong stance on irregular migration through tighter border controls.

The workshop examined the way in which the anti-trafficking framework has been taken up and translated by different stakeholders for different purposes, giving close attention to the micro-practices of state and non-state agents at the local level, or the way in which international policy becomes translated and enacted locally. Papers showed that the anti-trafficking framework has become influential and even over-determining in some border sites and yet remains almost irrelevant in others. Many papers found a closer relationship between anti- trafficking and state concerns with border security than between anti-trafficking and its supposed humanitarian foundations. At the same time, the state does not act as a single coherent unit; rather different elements within the state may pursue different, sometimes conflicting agendas. In particular it was noted that the criminal justice system (and that data that it generates), although frequently used as evidence that something is being done to address trafficking, may work in practice to allow more thorough exploitation of migrants.

25 & 26 June 2009
A special ANRC mid project workshop convened by Prof Robert Cribb from The Australian National University
Transmission of Academic Values in Asian Studies
held in Canberra
Outcome Summary
The workshop examined issues surrounding the transmission of scholarly values in Asian Studies. It drew upon the views of scholars from a range of life-stages in order to seek a clearer picture of the values that scholars see as important to preserve and of the techniques for achieving transmission between the generations. A feature of the workshop was attention to differences in values and practice between Australia and other countries. There were 27 presenters and a further 37 participants.

See: Transmission of Academic Values in Asian Studies proceedings

26 - 28 May 2009
Workshop convened by Prof Arlo Griffiths from Leiden University, A/Prof Helen Creese from University of Queensland, and Dr Titik Pudjiastuti from Universitas Indonesia
The Old Javanese Rāmāyaṇa. Text, History, Culture
held at the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies, Jakarta.

Outcome Summary
This workshop brought specialists on early Javanese literature, history and culture together with Sanskritists to consider the Old Javanese Rāmāyaṇa text. There were 21 participants. The discussions in the workshop ranged from highly technical issues arising from the editing of Old Javanese texts and their translation. It emerged that, while editions of Sanskrit texts are prepared on the basis of manuscripts from different (and often distant) geographical areas of the Indian Subcontinent, editions of Old Javanese texts often keep separate the manuscripts from the Javanese and Balinese traditions on account of the great degree of variation existing between sources from the two areas. There was extensive discussion of whether it was worthwhile to refer to Sanskrit source texts such as the Bhaṭṭikāvya, when editing the Old Javanese poem, at the risk of creating an ‘artificial’ text.

There was also considerable discussion of the issue of the religiosity in the Rāmāyaṇa Kakawin. Sanskritists pointed that ‘Hinduism’ is no longer regarded as a unitary religion, and that focussing on specific traditions such as Śaivism may be more fruitful when identifying Indic religious influences in the Rāmāyaṇa Kakawin and other Old Javanese texts. Several presentations focussed on art-historical themes, resulting in a multi- and inter-disciplinary debate of a level rarely seen during this kind of event.

14 May 2009
Policy Lecture presented by Professor Henk Schulte Nordholt, Acting Director of the Royal Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies, Leiden and Professor of Southeast Asian Studies, VU University, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Democracy and citizenship in Indonesia [mp3 recording]
held at The Australian National University, Canberra and supported by the Australian Institute of International Affairs, ACT Branch.

Since 1998 Indonesia has witnessed a successful transition to electoral democracy. Whether democracy will take root in a more substantial way depends on the extent to which a notion of citizenship can be reinforced. Such a notion can only be maintained though the strengthening of the rule of law. In this respect it is important to focus on the uneasy relationship between electoral democracy and ethnic and religious sentiments that tend to emphasize exclusive group interests while excluding a shared sense of citizenship. In this context it is also important to investigate why many NGOs failed to move into politics. Finally it is argued that, contrary to neo liberal ideas, democracy and citizenship can only be achieved by strengthening the administrative and law-enforcing capacity of the state.

22 - 24 September 2008
Workshop convened by Dr Edward Aspinall from The Australian National University and Dr Gerry van Klinken from the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies
The state and illegality in Indonesia
held at The Australian National University, Canberra

Outcome summary
There were 21 participants including researchers and postgraduate students from three Dutch, four Australian and four Asian universities or institutions. The conference set out to explore the phenomenon of state officials who undertake illegal actions, that is, those prohibited by their own organisation. The basic premise of the workshop was that illegal activities by state officials cannot be understood without exploring the ways in which they are a part of the logic of the functioning of the state. They are not simply an aberration external to the normal workings of the state, the work of evil or weak officials who manage to evade detection or prosecution. Following this line of reasoning produced two almost revelatory experiences during the workshop. First, better contextualising of what we observed led to a better understanding of the social and political pressures which can drive otherwise well-meaning and moral officials into corrupt activities. Second, reflecting on these socially embedded practices led, here and there, to fresh insights into the nature of the state itself.

The papers were divided into four groups. The first concerned historical and theoretical questions. The papers in this group examined the history of illegality within the state, and the theoretical problems it raises for our understanding of the state. The second focused on concrete case studies, showing exactly how corruption works in various sectors of the economy, from the construction industry to emigration. The third looked at the relationship between illegal practices and physical insecurity - a topic that is too often missing from the rather abstract literature on good governance. The fourth and final section took up the meeting between Indonesian and international anti-corruption discourses, and the misperceptions and unintended consequences that often flow out of this encounter.

7 & 8 July 2008
Workshop convened by Prof Martin van Bruinessen from Utrecht University and the International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World (ISIM) and Dr Greg Fealy from The Australian National University
Studying Islam in Southeast Asia: state of the art and new approaches
held at Snouck Hurgronjehuis, Leiden

Outcome summary
There were 25 participants including researchers and postgraduate students from four Australian, four Dutch and two Southeast Asian Universities or institutions. The aim of the workshop was to reflect critically on the current state of scholarship on Southeast Asian Islam and consider new approaches and possible collaborations to understanding Islamic politics, culture, society and law in a regional context. The workshop was divided into three broad themes: (1) governance and bureaucratic administration of Islam; (2) transnational Islamic networks in Southeast Asia; and (3) Islam, media and performance.

Most presenters not only discussed their current research but also critiqued the existing literature on regional Islam, considering in particular methodological and epistemological shortcomings. On historical matters, various speakers remarked that the historiography of Indonesian Islam continued to be influenced by colonial assumptions and that new approaches which looked more critically at Dutch policy preoccupations were needed. Discussions on the issue of Islam and state dwelt on the contested interpretations of ideal religion-state relations, both in Indonesia and Malaysia, and the ways in which states are encroaching more extensively into the religious lives of citizens. Close attention was given to the modalities of incorporating elements of the sharia in national legislation and local regulations in both countries, with participants putting forward different interpretations of data to support arguments about the extent of the impact of Islamic law.

The transnational Islam session looked at the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood, Salafism, Hizbut Tahrir and Tablighi Jamaat as well as more liberal currents of Islamic thought in various parts of Southeast Asia. Papers analysed the reasons for the growth in popularity of these movements and need for new multi-disciplinary methodological approaches in order to illuminate different facets of the Islamist ideology and life. The final sessions considered a variety of Islamic cultural expressions in Indonesia and Malaysia, including dance and musical forms, as well as the rhetorical styles and doctrinal content of popular preaching. Presenters looked at how political, religious and commercial forces shape these popular cultural forms.

16 April 2008
Policy Forum presented by Dr Robert Cribb from The Australian National University
Myths about mass violence: lessons from Indonesia
held at Campus Den Haag, Leiden University, The Hague and co-sponsored by the Australian Embassy, The Hague

The sudden outbreak of mass violence remains an urgent but perplexing problem in international affairs.  Seemingly peaceful societies can descend suddenly into internecine conflict, suggesting deep undercurrents of conflict and hatred that need to be identified and remedied in order to forestall future violent outbreaks.  Indonesia unfortunately has a rich history of mass violence.  Although the targets of this violence have been sometimes ethnic, sometimes religious and sometimes political, close examination suggests that  deep conflicts and hatreds have been less important in sparking mass violence than the periodic weakness of the state, the withdrawal of state protection from specific groups and the dynamics by which violence escalates.  This conclusion in turn suggests, against conventional wisdom, that managing the early stages of violence is of greater importance in preventing human disaster than broader preventive measures.

12 December 2007
Policy Forum presented by Dr Greg Fealy from The Australian National University
Islamisation in Indonesia: A Critical Analysis of Trends
held at Campus Den Haag, Leiden University, The Hague and co-sponsored by the Australian Embassy, The Hague

A common theme in recent media coverage and some academic writings is that Indonesia is undergoing rapid Islamisation and that this is making Indonesian Muslims more conservative and exclusivist, if not radical.  References are made to the emergence of the terrorist organisation Jemaah Islamiyah, to the proliferation of Islamist vigilante and paramilitary groups such as FPI, AGAP and Laskar Jihad, to the implementation of sharia-derived bylaws in many districts, and to the seeming growing community intolerance of ‘deviant’ Muslim sects, such as Ahmadiyah and Wahidiyah.

This presentation will critically examine the evidence regarding Islamisation.  It will draw on recent election results, public opinion surveys, and studies of trends in radical activity and local sharia-isation to argue that claims of growing Islamic militancy and conservatism are greatly exaggerated.  Moreover, it will critique the media and scholarly discourse on Indonesian Islam and analyse the reasons for the popularity of this ‘radical Indonesia’ interpretation.

4 September 2007
Preliminary workshop convened by Dr Greg Fealy from The Australian National University
International Dimensions of Indonesian Islam
held at The Australian National University, Canberra

Outcome summary
There were 22 participants including postgraduate students and representatives from five AustralianUniversities and two Indonesian Islamic universities. The main research priorities that emerged from the discussions were:

  1. the need to trace the personal ‘life histories’ of Muslims who move across different streams of thought and doctrine as this illuminates broader trends in Islamic religiosity;
  2. the desirability of considering the contribution of Indonesian Islamic thought and practice for the wider Islamic world;
  3. greater attention to regional cultural and literary contexts in studying Indonesian literature; and
  4. the importance of studying Islamic artistic expression in Indonesia in order to explore the relative impact of foreign and domestic forces.

The workshop also noted the need for workshop participants to make available their expertise to policy makers and government analysts, as a way of ensuring that a nuanced view of regional Islamic dynamics was informing government responses.