Since Indonesia's independence in 1945, when only approximately 8% of a cohort came
to school, despite major ethnic, linguistic and religious differences, it has
significantly succeeded in expanding the education system.
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The largest part of the education system is under the Ministry of Education
and Culture. The Islamic schools, however, are run by a ministry of religious
For children under the age of six, there are three-year private
preschools. This is followed by a six-year compulsory primary school. The first
two years are taught in the local language, after which the language of
instruction is bahasa indonesia. The first foreign language is English.
As a superstructure, there is a three-year primary school, which is applied
for by 56% (1994); the current five-year plan, Repelita VI, is strongly
committed to increasing this share. In the three-year upper secondary school,
which includes both vocational and general schools, 82% (1994) of those who
complete the lower secondary school continue.
There are more than 1000 higher education institutions, a much sought
after Open University. The vast majority of universities are private.
ETYMOLOGY: The name Indonesia comes from gr indos 'Indian, Indian' and nesos 'island'.
OFFICIAL NAME: Republic of Indonesia
CAPITAL CITY: Jakarta
POPULATION: 237,600,000 (Source: COUNTRYaah)
AREA: 1,920,000 km²
OFFICIAL LANGUAGE (S): Indonesian (bahasa indonesia), Javanese, Sundanese and approximately 250
other Austronesian languages
RELIGION: Muslims 88%, Protestants 5%, Catholics 3%, Hindus 2%, Buddhists 1%, others 1%
CURRENCY CODE: IDR
ENGLISH NAME: Indonesia
POPULATION COMPOSITION: Malays 90% (including Javanese 39%, Sundanese 16%, Madurese 4%), Chinese 2%,
others (especially Dajaks and Papuans) 8%
GDP PER residents: $ 942 (2007)
LIFE EXPECTANCY: men 66 years, women 69 years (2007)
INDEX OF LIVING CONDITIONS, HDI: 0.711
INDEX OF LIVING CONDITIONS, POSITION: 108
INTERNET DOMAIN NAME: .id
Indonesia, the republic of Southeast Asia's upper world between Australia and
the Asian mainland, by population the world's fourth largest country (after
China, India and the United States) with the world's largest Muslim
population. Indonesia was a typical developing country until the 1980's, but is
now one of the "tigers", a number of countries in South and East Asia with
economic growth and declining poverty. Since independence in 1945, the country
(with the exception of a brief number of years in the 1950's) has had an
authoritarian rule with the military centrally located in both the economy and
Indonesia has huge differences, naturally, ethnically and in terms of
economic development. In the interior of Kalimantan and Papua and on several of
the small islands there are people who still live as collectors and hunters,
while the farmers of Java and Sumatra have for many generations
produced coffee, rice and sugar for the world market.
Indonesia - Constitution
The Republic's Constitution is from 1945 with amendments from 1950 and 1969.
It is based on "The Five Principles", ie. monotheism, humanitarianism,
Indonesian unity, representative consensus democracy and social
justice. Legislative power lies with the House of Representatives with 550
directly elected members. Elections are held every five years. There is also an
assembly of regional representatives advising the President on regional
issues. A third body is the People's Advisory Assembly, which partly can
raise state lawsuits, partly can propose amendments to the constitution. It is
composed of members of the two previously mentioned assemblies. The president
has the executive power. He is elected every five years with a Vice-President by
direct election for a term of five years.
Economic policy under Suharto's dictatorship (1967-98) has been characterized
by consistency and continuity, which is seen as a major reason why Indonesia has
been able to raise living standards considerably and move up the class of
middle-income countries. The core of economic policy is to ensure stability,
growth and equality, which sought to be fulfilled through five-year plans,
which set out visions and framework conditions for economic activity. The
development was severely interrupted by the Asian crisis in 1997, which led to a
fall in GDP of 13%, and the following years saw relatively small growth
rates. Official unemployment rose dramatically and is still (2005) up to 12%.
Fiscal policy has traditionally been aimed at ensuring the balance of public
budgets, which, combined with a tight monetary policy, has kept inflation at a
relatively low level, but prevented the necessary investments in the education
and health sectors. Large subsidies to compensate for oil price increases in
2005 led to budget deficits, and as subsidies were reduced, inflation began,
reaching 17% at the end of the year. Indonesia's biggest economic problem is
related to the development of the balance of payments, which, despite a large
trade surplus, is showing a deficit. This has led to a dramatic increase in the
external debt, which in 2005 amounted to around DKK 135 billion. dollars, which
corresponds to almost 50% of GDP. The balance of payments deficit has
increasingly been financed through foreign direct investment, which the
government, with the exception of a period from the mid-1970's to the mid-1980's,
has sought to bring to the country. Indonesia's political stability, low labor
costs and large market potential have long been attractive to investors from
other Asian countries such as Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore, but also from the
United States and Europe. In recent years, the investment climate, due to
poorly functioning banking, corruption and social unrest, have been considered
Indonesia's economy is relatively open, although foreign trade has
historically been sought to be regulated through high tariffs, volume
restrictions and trade licenses. Indonesia is a member of OPEC and was until the
early 1980's economically dependent on oil production. The sharp fluctuations in
world oil prices in the 1970's and 1980's gave rise to several major devaluations
of the currency, the rupiah, but also to a rethinking of economic
policy. Thus, the government has reduced oil dependence considerably through a
rapid build-up of a broader-based industry; in 2004, the country became a net
importer of oil, but still had a significant gas export.
Indonesia's trade restrictions have been gradually phased out since the early
1990's, just as the country is becoming more and more closely associated with the
immediate world through participation in, among other things, ASEAN,
Association of South East Asian Nations, and APEC, Asia-Pacific Economic
Co-operation. The main trading partners were (2005) Japan, China, Singapore and
Denmark's exports to Indonesia in 2005 amounted to DKK 524 million. DKK,
while imports from there amounted to 1002 mill. kr.
Indonesia - social conditions
Indonesia's economic growth has reduced poverty since the mid-1980's. In
1980-95, the proportion of the population living in absolute poverty fell from
approximately 30% to approximately 15%. The Asian financial crisis of 1997-98 helped
increase poverty both in the big cities and in the countryside.
The general dissatisfaction with President Suharto's authoritarian rule in
early 1998 contributed to widespread unrest and demonstrations that led to
Suharto's downfall. Changing governments have since sought to bridge the gap
between rich and poor, but large regional divides still plague Indonesia.
The high population density and lack of agricultural land have in the past
led the Indonesian government to launch programs to relocate people from the
main island of Java to the less densely populated areas, such as Sumatra. The
programs were internationally criticized for harming the indigenous people and
causing the destruction of the rainforest, and they are still contributing to
ethnic and religious tensions.
Indonesia (Health Conditions)
The state of health varies greatly between the relatively prosperous areas of
Java and the more backward areas of Papua. The average life expectancy for men
and women is respectively. 61 and 65 years (1993). The probability of dying
before the fifth year of life is 9.7% against 0.9% in Denmark. Maternal
mortality is 650 per 100,000 births.
AIDS has come to SEA Asia quite late. In 1996, 108 cases of AIDS were
reported in Indonesia, corresponding to 0.7 cases of AIDS per
year. mio. residents. However, the real prevalence of HIV infection in the
population must be assumed to be greater and increasing.
Malaria occurs all over the country with the exception of Jakarta and other
major cities. It is estimated that there are 1.3 million. cases of malaria per
year, far more than the registered 22,000 cases. The prevalence of both
diphtheria and polio suggests that childhood vaccination has not yet fully
reached the poorest areas. A high incidence of typhus, which is the fifth most
common cause of death, testifies to significant problems with the drinking water
supply as well as the general hygiene. Similarly, cholera remains endemic with
more than 5,000 cases a year. Tuberculosisoccurs frequently, and especially in
Papua is seen in areas leprosy in up to 1 ‰ of the population. There is a high
incidence of a number of infectious diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, such as
dengue fever, Japanese encephalitis and filariasis. As something characteristic
of South Asia, up to 15% of the population are carriers of the virus that causes
hepatitis type B. As the disease can cause liver cancer, this form of cancer is
one of the most common in Indonesia.
The Armed Forces is (2006) at 302,000. The army is at 233,000, the navy
45,000, the air force 24,000. There is two years of military service for those
who are drafted. The reserve is 400,000. Army and Navy are equipped with a mix
of older Western and Soviet equipment. The Air Force is equipped with a mix of
modern and older Western equipment. The organization of the Armed Forces appears
to be adapted to the country's geography and terrain. Their composition shows
that the primary role is internal security and securing the connections within
the archipelago. The actual security forces are at 280,000.
Indonesia - mass media
The Dutch colonial power published the first newspaper at the end of the 18th
century. It was about events in Europe. In 1812 the first newspaper on local
affairs was published. The first newspaper in Javanese was published in 1855.
There are (in 1999) 172 local, national or regional newspapers (total
circulation almost 5 million), of which 76 have a circulation of over 20,000.
The most important are Pos Kota with a circulation of 600,000 (2000), Kompas
(grdl. 1965) with a circulation of 530,000 (2004), Jawa Pos (circulation
434,000), Suara Pembaruan (grdl. 1987) with a circulation of 285,000 (2005) as
well as Republika (grdl. 1993) and Jakarta Post (grdl. 1983) with a circulation
of 35,000 (2004); the latter is in English.
Indonesia Business Weekly (Grdl. 1992) with a circulation of 15,000 is the
most important of a dozen economic weekly magazines, which often have a
political content. There are a total of 425 journals with a total circulation of
almost DKK 8 million.
After years of severe restrictions on the media, the tide was turned in 1999,
and since then the media has gained greater freedom. However, no more than
Journalists Without Borders has Indonesia in 102nd place (out of 167) in its
worldwide index of press freedom (2005).
Radio Republic of Indonesia has 53 radio stations (2002) and also broadcasts
abroad in 10 languages. There are also a myriad of private radio stations. Until
2000, RRI was the president's mouthpiece, then it went on to be public service.
There are 41 TV stations - including the channels of the State Television
Republic of Indonesia as well as a number of private TV channels. The Internet
does not immediately stand for breakthrough in Indonesia, where only 18
million. (about 7%) had access to it in 2005.
Indonesia - visual arts and architecture
An art of significance was first created in the Indonesian archipelago when
Indian cultural influence took hold from the early 400's, and it was the
architecture and sculpture of Hinduism and Buddhism that came to characterize a
lush Indonesian art. The first examples of an Indian-influenced art are
monuments on Central Java from the early 700-t. The Indo-Javanese period lasted
until about 1450 with its peak in 700-900-t.
Both Hindu and Buddhist shrines called candi (a combined temple and
tomb monument) are built of natural stone and brick. The oldest memorials are a
group of smaller Hindu temples, dedicated to the god Shiva. They became the
norm for the Javanese temple construction of the following centuries. From
approximately In 775 a lively Buddhist construction activity took place. The oldest
dated temple is a candi built 778 for the Mahayana goddess Tara.
The otherwise widespread Buddhist monument, the stupa, is represented
surprisingly few places in Indonesia. On the other hand, the stupa complex
in Borobudur (approximately 800) with the stunning reliefs of Buddha's life is the most
magnificent edifice in Buddhist art. Famous for its decorations is the
contemporary candi Mendut with three giant statues depicting the teaching Buddha
and two bodhisattvas.
After 832, the Shiva cult had a renaissance with the construction of the
mighty temple complex, candi Loro Jonggrang, a Hindu counterpart to
Borobudur. Around 930, the Hindu center of power was relocated to East Java,
where temple construction continued until approximately 1450, when the Hindu kingdom
was severely oppressed by the growing influence of Islam on the island. The
royal family and the court fled to Bali, where Hindu culture is preserved to
Painting has never played a major role in Indonesian art, it has the arts and
crafts. Famous are, for example, the art of blacksmithing and the Balinese
woodcarving work. Indonesian textile dyeing techniques such as batik and ikat
have long been used by artisans around the world.
Western influence has influenced both Indonesian arts and crafts, but after
Indonesia's independence, among other things. by creating art schools tried to
create their own national art based on traditional style and technique. A
representative of modern Indonesian art is the Balinese painter Ida Bogus Made,
who has adorned the UN building in New York with a painting.
Indonesia - literature
Indonesia - Literature, Literature before 1900
The literature before 1945 consists primarily of Malay literature,
see Malaysia literature, and Javanese literature. Javanese literature is
written down between the 800's and 1600's. on kavi, the Javanese poetic
language. The themes are taken from the classical Indian works, especially Ramayana and Mahabharata,
and are influenced by the local tradition.
The literature includes mythological poems, kanda, epic prose, parva,
legal texts and texts on medicine, usada. In addition, classical
poetry, kakawin, and the famous shadow and puppet games, wajang. A
chronicler of a mythical nature, kidung, describes the history of
Java. The Panji legends tell of the amazing adventures of two lovers in
a magical universe, populated by Hindu gods.
The gradual Islamization of Java from the 1300's. caused the Hindu-inspired
Javanese manuscripts to be preserved only in the still Hindu Bali.
The literature after 1945
There is literature in a number of regional languages such as Javanese and
Sundanese, but the national literature is predominantly written in the
national language Bahasa Indonesia. This literature was promoted by the
publisher Balai Pustaka with the publication of, for example, Marah Rusli's
(1889-1968) novel Fru Nurbaya (1928) on the favorite theme of the time:
In the journal Pujangga Baru (The New Poet) from 1933, traditionalists such
as Sanusi Pane (1905-68) and modernists such as the Western-oriented Sutan
Takdir Alisjahbana (1908-1994) discussed the shaping of an Indonesian literary
culture and the conflict between Western individualism and Eastern mysticism. A
discussion that has characterized the entire 1900's.
The modernist was also the poet Chairil Anwar (1922-49), who exerted great
influence on Angkatan 45, the generation of writers after 1945, who in
social-realistic works interpreted the national identity of the new
Indonesia. Mochtar Lubis' (1922-2004) novel Road without End (1952)
represents a more philosophical current, as does AK Mihardja's (b. 1911) novel
The Atheist (1949), which deals with the conflict between religion and
secular modernity, a theme that now and then has brought Indonesian writers into
conflict with the Islamic clergy.
After the coup in 1965, Sukarno's regime tightened its grip on the writers,
including Indonesia's probably best-known author Pramoedya Ananta Toer
(1925-2006) with the novel The Land of Men (1980).
The forerunner of the small group of female writers is Kartini. Among the
modern female writers may be mentioned S. Rukiah (b. 1927), who in the novel Defeat
and Love (1950) has described the Indonesian revolution, and Nh. Dini (b.
1936), best known for autobiographical works such as A Little Street in My
Indonesia - dance
In addition to the highly developed classical dance forms in Java and Bali,
Indonesia has numerous religious and ritual dances with a great variety, arising
partly from the isolation of the individual islands, partly through their
contact with other Asian and European culture. In terms of movement, there are
common features in the dances, but variations have been developed, which are
also repeated in costumes and body decoration.
The women's dance is characterized by grace and plastic charm, eg the light
dance, minangkaban from Sumatra, performed by young girls in the dark
with light in their hands; the men's dance shows strength and dexterity, for
example the press dance from Lombok, where two men fight against each
other with whips. The dances are accompanied by eg gamelan orchestra. On the
islands where the number of tourists is large, the dance often bears more of the
mark of being a dance show.
There is also a lot of experimentation with creating modern dance forms. See
also Bali (music, dance and theater) and Java (theater and dance).
Indonesian music is associated by most with Javanese and Balinese gamelan,
which are very varied orchestral types dominated by idiophones. It is these,
especially the gong ensembles, that have made the area known in the West. Taken
as a whole, Indonesia is characterized by a far greater musical diversity. Among
the tribesmen around the smaller islands and inland of the larger islands there
is a wide variety of different instruments: mouth organs, Jewish harps, nose and
pan flutes, drums and other percussion, which are used for ceremonies and
entertainment, often in combination with dance. In addition, many places have a
large repertoire of songs.
Indonesia is an area where many of the world's great music cultures have
crossed each other at different times. In the northern coastal area, instruments
(tambourines, lutes, oboes) and musical elements from the Arab-Persian culture
that came to the area with Islam frequently occur. The court culture of the
larger islands of Kalimantan and Sumatra traces the connection to the
Javanese-Balinese gamelan tradition. Indian elements in the music originate
mainly from Indian films and like the Chinese influence, they appear mainly in
popular music. Western inspiration is found in certain local, popular types of
music and in the elite's (periodic) cult of Western music, both classical and
pop. An actual cross-ethnic music really only exists within popular music, which
includes several different genres.
This includes Kroncong, which emerged during the colonial era and
gained national popularity through the 1930's film industry. The genre has roots
in the music of the descendants of Asian slaves from the Portuguese period, and
the Portuguese inspiration is evident. Previously, the language was Portuguese
patois. The slow, sentimental song, inspired by both Portuguese fado music and
East African-Arabic singing style, is accompanied by the European instruments
ukulele (kroncong in Indonesian), guitar, violin, cello, flute and
percussion, which have recorded elements from bl.a. gamelan music. In recent
times, Indonesian (bahasa indonesia) is often sung; in modernized
form it has become the salon music of the cities.
A more recent popular musical genre is orkes melanyu from the 1940's
and 1950's; it originates from Sumatra, but has over time been spread over all
the islands. Here, too, the language is Indonesian, while the rhythm and
ornamentation are Arabic and the melody Arabic and Indian. Indian, Indonesian
and western instruments are mixed in this romantic pop music. Since the 1970's,
the genres dangdut with its blend of Indian tabla rhythm and Western
instrumental sound in a youth-oriented dance music and pop indonesia,
in which Latin American dance rhythms are combined with Western pop to
Indonesian lyrics, have garnered much attention among young people; the same
goes for jaipongan, which as the only widely popular genre has roots
in the purely local, West Javanese gamelan music. Also seeBali (music, dance and
theater) and Java (music).
Indonesian cuisine has many features in common with Malay and Polynesian
cuisine and is influenced by the Chinese. Typically, contrast-rich meals are
sour and sweet, fresh and spicy dishes with coconut, ginger and bell pepper as
well as rice.