Item Details

Religion and Locality: The Case of the Islam Nusantara Movement in Indonesia

Issue: Vol 13 No. 2 (2018)

Journal: Fieldwork in Religion

Subject Areas: Religious Studies Linguistics

DOI: 10.1558/firn.37050


Indonesia is known for its multicultural social setting, with approximately three hundred local ethnicities and five hundred local languages. Religions also have infiltrated into the life of Indonesia. Among six officially recognized religions, Islam occupies the majority religion in the country, and the total number of Muslims is almost two hundred million. That makes Indonesia the most populous Muslim country in the world. However, we also know that the legacy of pre-Islamic civilizations, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and indigenous religions, is still deeply rooted in Indonesian soil. With this socio-cultural background, Indonesian Islam has developed with the influence of local traditions. We see several Islamic rituals and practices that seem to have been "Indonesianized". Yet, this localized version of Islam is by no means favoured by more religiously strict Islamic groups. In 2015, Nahdlatul Ulama, the largest Islamic organization, launched the so-called Islam Nusantara movement, which upholds the essence of local culture in Islam. This newly-emerged religious movement also presents a profound question in relation to the authenticity of religion, that is, whether religions are able to maintain the "original" rituals and practices without historical,  geographical and regional influences. We will explore the development of the Islam Nusantara movement with this question in mind.

Author: Hisanori Kato

View Original Web Page

References :

Aspinall, Edward

2005 Opposing Suharto. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

Azra, Azyumardi

2015 Jaringan Ulama Nusantara. In Islam Nusantara, edited by A. Sahal and M. Aziz, 169–73. Bandung: Mizan.

Badan Pusat Statistik

2011 Kewarganegaraan, Suku Bangsa, Agama, dan Bahasa Sehari-hari penduduk Indonesia.

Baso, Ahmad

2017 The Intellectual Origins of Islam Nusantara. Jakarta: Pustaka Afid Jakarta.

Eisenstad, S. N.

1996 Japanese Civilization: Comparative View. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Endo, Shusaku

2016 Kirishitan no Sato. Tokyo: Chuokoronsha.

Fachrudin, A. A.

2015 The Face of Islam Nusantara. Jakarta Post, July 24.

Geertz, Clifford

1971 Islam Observed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Hasyim, Syafiq

2018 Islam Nusantara Dalam Konteks. Yogyakarta: Gading.

Katakura, Motoko

1991 Isuramu no Nichijyo Sekai. Tokyo: Iwanamishoten.

Kato, Hisanori

2012 Religion as an Organic Entity. Comparative Civilizations Review 67: 37–49.

2017a The Challenge to Religious Tolerance: Fundamentalist Resistance to a non-Muslim Leader in Indonesia. Comparative Civilizations Review 77: 77–89.

2017b Sexual Minorities in Indonesia. Dialogue and Universalism XXVII: 103–115.

Laffan, Michael

2011 The Makings of Indonesian Islam. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Legge, James

1964 Indonesia. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall.

Menchik, Jeremy

2016 Islam and Democracy in Indonesia. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Nahdlatul Ulama

2016 International Summit of Moderate Islamic Leaders (ISOMIL) & Deklarasi. Jakarta: Pengurus Besar NU.

Radcliffe-Brown, A. R.

1965 Structure and Function in Primitive Society: Essays and Addresses. New York: The Free Press.

Ricklefs, M. C.

1993 A History of Modern Indonesia Since c.1300. London: Macmillan.

2012 Islamisation and Its Opponents in Java c.1300 to the Present. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press.

Sahal, A., and A. Aziz (eds)

2015 Prolog. In Islam Nusantara. Edited by A. Sahal and M. Aziz, 15–30. Bandung: Mizan.

Wahid, Abdurrahman

2015 Pribumisasi Islam. In Islam Nusantara, edited by A. Sahal and M. Aziz. 33–48. Bandung: Mizan.

Woodward, Mark

2011 Java, Indonesia and Islam. New York: Springer.