(Un) Civil Society and Political Change in Indonesia
Publication Date :
1 Jan 2009
This book is a critical analysis of Indonesia's civil society and its impact on the country's democratization efforts that does not only take the classical, pro-democratic actors of civil society into account but also portray uncivil groups and their growing influence on political processes. In the wake of democratic opening, not only pro-democratic civil society organizations have mushroomed in the country, but 'uncivil' society groups have come increasingly to the fore as well. On the non-state level, violence is executed by self-protection groups, militias, fundamentalist religious groups, terrorist groups, and many more. The book analyses the framework for the development of civil society in Indonesia: the past and present political system and its implications for (civil) society, the role religion (and in particular Islam)play in Indonesia, the state of democratic culture, ethnic and other identities and the advancement of human rights. It draws an overall picture of Indonesia's associational life and the dynamics between its actors after 1998 and introduces some actors of both 'civil' and 'uncivil' society while answering questions about the nature of interaction between civil society and state as well as within civil society. Finally, the book illustrates that an opening up of the public sphere and the rise of civil society can have negative impacts on democratization processes as well. This book will be of interest to upper level undergraduates, postgraduates and academics in political science and Southeast Asian studies.