Series # 4: Reflections on Indonesia’s last 200 years

Topic      : “The World We Have Lost: Reflections on Indonesia’s last 200 years,
1811 – 2011”
Speaker : Peter Carey, Fellow Emeritus Trinity College, Oxford
Date       : Tuesday, 27 December 2011
Venue    : 22 Marshall Road Singapore 424858


About the Speaker

Peter was born in Rangoon, Burma on 30 April 1948 to parents who had made their lives in Asia. He was educated in the UK (1956-69) and on graduation from Oxford in Modern History in 1969 had the chance to do postgraduate studies in Cornell, where he first became interested in Javanese History. A series of fortuitous events caused Peter to become interested in the figure of Prince Diponegoro of Yogyakarta (1785-1855) who led the Java War (1825-30) against the Dutch. A Hamlet figure he was torn between his mysticism and his calling to become the leader of a Holy War (perang sabil) against the Dutch – Diponegoro’s life reflected the paradoxes and tragedies of colonialism. In the space of 4 years between 1808 and 1812. Javanese society was torn apart and a new colonial state created. Peter’s talk will reflect on the historical figure of Diponegoro and his resources for the present time when there is a dearth of leadership and vision for the future of the Indonesian state which is now confronting unique challenges in the run-up to the 2014 Presidential election.

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