Indonesian Destinies

Front Cover
Harvard University Press, 2009 - Biography & Autobiography - 640 pages
3 Reviews
How can such a gentle people as we are be so murderous? a prominent Indonesian asks. That question--and the mysteries of the archipelago's vast contradictions--haunt Theodore Friend's remarkable work, a narrative of Indonesia during the last half century, from the postwar revolution against Dutch imperialism to the unrest of today. Part history, part meditation on a place and a past observed firsthand, Indonesian Destinies penetrates events that gave birth to the world's fourth largest nation and assesses the continuing dangers that threaten to tear it apart. Friend reveals Sukarno's character through wartime collaboration with Japan, and Suharto's through the mass murder of communists that brought him to power for thirty-two years. He guides our understanding of the tolerant forms of Islam prevailing among the largest Muslim population in the world, and shows growing tensions generated by international terrorism. Drawing on a deep knowledge of the country's cultures, its leaders, and its ordinary people, Friend gives a human face and a sense of immediacy to the self-inflicted failures and immeasurable tragedies that cast a shadow over Indonesia's past and future. A clear and compelling passion shines through this richly illustrated work. Rarely have narrative history and personal historical witness been so seamlessly joined.
 

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User Review  - ebethe - LibraryThing

I recently moved to Indonesia and was looking for something in English that was more current affairs than history. This has a lot of current history, but way too much gossip and too learned references ... Read full review

Indonesian destinies

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Of the major countries in Asia, Indonesia is the least known to Americans, and Friend, a distinguished educator and scholar, hopes to provide a sense of that country's history over the past half ... Read full review

Contents

THE LARGEST MUSLIM NATION
1
INDONESIA THE DEVOURING NURTURER
17
GUIDED CHAOS
47
EGO VOICE VERTIGO
71
MASS MURDER
100
THE SMILE OF PROGRESS
129
THE NEW MAJAPAHIT EMPIRE
160
THE SOUND OF SILENCE
188
STROKE
347
NEW LEADERS NEW ISLAM
380
ELECTION 1999 REDS GREENS BLUES YELLOWS
405
EAST TIMOR
431
ANARCHODEMOCRACY
460
SUKARNOS DAUGHTER IN THE PALACE
499
CHRONOLOGY
528
SOURCES
534

THE LAST YEARS OF LIVING SECURELY
219
BEHIND BEYOND BENEATH THE POWER STRUCTURE
254
INDONESIA BURNING
285
FORCING OUT SUHARTO
311
NOTES
539
GLOSSARY
599
INDEX
606
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

Theodore Friend, former President of Swarthmore College, and President Emeritus of Eisenhower Fellowships, is now a Senior Fellow of the Foreign Policy Research Institute, Philadelphia. He was awarded the Bancroft Prize for his book on Philippine-American history, Between Two Empires. His other books include The Blue-Eyed Enemy and Family Laundry, a novel.

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