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Recent Studies in Indonesian Archaeology

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Item Code: UAS296
Author: Edi Sedyawati & I Wayan Ardika
Publisher: B.R. Publishing Corporation
Language: English
Edition: 2012
ISBN: 9789350500002
Pages: 215
Other Details 11.00 X 9.00 inch
Weight 910 gm
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Book Description
About the Book

The pioneering researches on Indonesia are mostly done by Dutch scholars who formulated various theories based on archaeological remains. Since then, a large number of new discoveries have been brought to light. The present book Recent Studies in Indonesian Archaeology includes seventeen research papers contributed by eminent scholars of Indonesia. These papers mainly focus on Balinese and Javanese archaeology. Prehistoric evidence points to the existence of developed societies practicing ancestral worship and also engaged in regional barter trade. The megalithic study reveals prevalence of homogenous culture continuing from Sumbawa to east of Bali. International trade gained strength because of the availability of natural products. Maritime activities culminated into the development of Hindu-Buddhist culture. The Padmasana in Bali brings to light the understanding of Indian philosophy. The sculptural analysis of the divine figures throws light on the enigmatic character of the deity. The location of the temples, especially in Central Java, is based on the geographical settings. The metal working shows elements of pre Hindu technology. Land-ownership broaches the social and administrative system of ancient Bali. The Subak system shows continuity of Balinese traditional social institution. The structural spatial analysis exposes the social and cultural significance of the city of the Islamic period. These pages provide the reader of the various aspects of Indonesian culture.

About the Author

Professor Dr. Edi Sedyawati (born in Malang, Indonesia, 1938) received her Doctor's degree from the University of Indonesia, Jakarta. A celebrated author; has published a number of books and research papers. Her dissertation entitled Ganesa Statuary of the Kadiri and Singhasari Periods: A Study of Art History (published both in Bahasa Indonesia and English) has been widely acclaimed. A renowned archaeologist, she has served in various positions: Head, Archaeology Department, University of Indonesia; Deputy Rector, Jakarta Institute for the Arts; Head, Research Centre for Humanities and Social Sciences; Director General, Ministry of Culture; Chairperson, Association of Indonesian. Archaeologists and Governor, representing Indonesia in the Asia Europe Foundation. At present, she is a professor in Archaeology, Faculty of Letters/Cultural Sciences, University of Indonesia. Professor I Wayan Ardika (born in Tabanan, Bali, Indonesia, 1952) obtained his Doctor's degree in Prehistory from Australian National University, Canberra, Australia. At Udayana University, Bali, he has served as a Professor in the Department of Archaeology and Director of the Post-Graduate Programme. As an archaeologist, he has excavated a number of archaeological sites including the sites of Sembiran and Pacung in the northeastern part of Bali. He has also received research grants from the Toyota Foundation and the German Foundation. He is currently Dean of the Faculty of Letters, Udayana University, Bali, Indonesia.


The idea of collaboration with the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi in publishing an anthology on Indonesian archaeology written by Indonesian archaeologists was first expressed during Dr. Kapila Vatsyayan's visit to Indonesia, that we had the honour to host. Dr. Vatsyayan's visit was in relation with the standing "Cultural Agreement" between India and Indonesia. She had then also represented the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts. We are indebted both to her and the institution for the invitation to collaborate for this publication. May this endeavour be of significance, both in augmenting the exposure of Indonesian archaeology, as well as in strengthening ties of cultural cooperation between India and Indonesia. The implementation of that idea, however, could not have materialised has it not been endorsed by Dr. Kalyan Kumar Chakravarty, then Member Secretary of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi. The editors would also like to acknowledge their colleague, Dr. Bachchan Kumar, South East Asian Studies, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi, who has worked closer to the ground, scrutinizing all details to bring the idea of this book to fruition.


The selection of articles appearing in this volume attempts to present an overview on recent studies in the archaeology of Indonesian. The editors expected to get more contributions with a better representation of the real extent and the variety of new finds within the study field. As reporting in archaeological field research is often slow because of technical and teamwork problems, for the moment the present volume cannot aspire for completeness. The main bulk of this compilation is concentrated on studies of Balinese and Javanese archaeology. Data of the past from Java and Bali gives conspicuous evidence on acculturation by Indian culture. This fact was also the ground for the choice, since this publication is done in India. Some of the articles have the style of an introduction, such as that written by R.P. Soejono. It gives an overview of pre-history in Indonesia, especially the potentials for sustained evolvement into the historic periods. The article by I Made Sutaba, reports on a concrete example of new finds related to pre-historic burial systems, exposed through archaeological excavtion at Manikliyu, Bali. A new approach to study pre-historic data is attempted by Fadhila Arifin Aziz. She makes demographic interpretations of human remains found at the Bronze-Iron Age site of Gilimanuk, Bali. Another study on pre- history is the survey made by Ayu Kusumawati. She presents the results of a recent survey on megalithic remains on the Island of Sumbawa to the east of Bali, and points out that those remains have many features in common with similar remains found on Bali, and that megalithic remains to the east of Sumbawa have different characteristics.

I Wayan Ardika's article is an introduction to the next phase of history. He discussed the international trading system that indirectly brought about in Indonesia the initial experiences in state formation. The supply of specific natural products of Indonesia was one among the factors for intensive trade relations that resulted also in exchanges of ideas. It must be along those lines of encounter that Hinduism and Buddhism came to Indonesia. I Wayan Patera's study on the development of padmasana (Hindu-Balinese 'throne' pedestal for God) using local Hindu texts as reference, is a case of post-acculturation process of localisation. Mundardjito studied Hindu-Buddhist sites in Java, especially those around Yogyakarta, in relation to their ecological setting. He has made the first step in such an approach in Indonesian archaeology. I Wayan Srijaya in assessing archaeological sites along two rivers in Bali also used geological and geographical determinants to explain about the existence of those sites. Peter Ferdinandus's survey on musical instruments, found in ancient sources, both written and visual, was carried out in Java and Bali. Sri Soejatmi Satari covers a specific area, namely the northern part of the present Central Java province. S. Kusparyati Boedhijono, Ratnaesih Maulana, and I Wayan Redig present another approach to Archaeology. They concentrate on one divine figure and discuss the iconographical characteristics found in sculptural expressions in Bali and Java. Timbul Haryono discusses metal working using mainly Javanese sources. He indicates that there are pre-Hindu elements in the technology which are symbolic. I Gusti Ngurah Tara Wiguna discusses another system, namely land-ownership in ancient Bali. He probes into the functions of land in ancient Balinese social and administrative system. Using existing written sources, he categorises four functions of land. Another Balinese traditional institution discussed in this monograph is the subak system, which is a social system for the management of rice-field irrigation. I Ketut Setiawan gleaned the relevant information from 9th to 12th century Balinese inscriptions on this inter-village irrigation management system. He also explains the ritual aspect of the system. It is worth noting that the subak system is still functioning, not only on the island of Bali, but also in Balinese transmigration settlements elsewhere. One example in Sausu, Central Sulawesi, even demonstrates that the system is applicable in an inter-ethnic community. Local inhabitants as well as non-Balinese migrants participate in the system, but leave the ritual activities to be done only by the Hindu-Balinese. The last article in this compilation is an analysis of a capital city of the 'Islamic' period in Java. Inajati Adrisijanti M. Romli has written her dissertation in 1997 on three capital cities during the Islamic period in Javanese history, the cities of Kota Gede, Plered and Kartasura. Her structural-spatial analysis, as exposed in the present article, also discusses the social and cultural significance of the city. Most of the articles in this volume incorporate some new evidences that have not been published elsewhere. We hope that these expositions would encourage further discussions among a wider range of scholars.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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