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The arrival of the Europeans

Advent of European Commerce The Portuguese were the first to discover a direct sea route to India. It was on May 20, 1498, that Portuguese sailor, Vasco da Gama arrived at Calicut. King Zamorin, the local rule welcomed him and gave him a lot of higher privileges. He stayed in India for around three months. […]

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Indonesia Freedom Movement – 5

Indonesian Nationalism If, as Lowenthal says, heritage preservation is about nationalism, does this work in a post-colonial state?  A project contemporary to the Dutch Historic Urban Center project offers a useful comparison.  Mrs. Suharto’s “Beautiful Indonesia in Miniature Park,” begun in 1971, was more overtly nationalistic.  The project was inspired by Disneyland, and would be […]

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Indonesia Freedom Movement – 4

Contemporary Identity How do these heritage projects work internally to create or shore up national identity?  We can look both at the identity of the Dutch, who retain an interest in Indonesia’s colonial heritage because it is also their heritage, and also at the identity of the Indonesians, who’s colonized past is still part of […]

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Indonesia Freedom Movement – 3

Tourism This first motivation is clearly economic – the city wants to attract tourist money by appealing to the heritage and intellectual interests of tourists, which may or may not reflect the cultural identity of the tourist.  Tourists may be interested in the restored Dutch Historic Urban Center and the National Archives Building because of […]

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Indonesia Freedom Movement – 2

History of Dutch Involvement in Indonesia As projects of heritage restoration necessarily involve history, let us turn now to a brief history of the Netherlands East Indies and Indonesia.  I will begin with the Dutch arrival, as the projects discussed below begin their engagement here.  When the Dutch arrived on Java in the late sixteenth […]

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Indonesia Freedom Movement – 1

 Introduction This project explores two projects to preserve the footprint of the colonizing Dutch in post-colonial Jakarta, Indonesia, questioning their implications for contemporary Indonesia.  The first, to restore and reinvigorate the historic (Dutch) center of Jakarta, preserves the urban morphology of the colonial period, which at first seems to contradict the post-colonial political situation.  The […]

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