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Last month CRCS published two articles analyzing the highly polarizing Jakarta election: one discusses the topic of what the election means for Islamist groups, and the other examines the relation between identity and inequality in shaping the election. We also featured an opinion piece on the Trump presidency by a local expat, our latest publication on intolerance in Yogyakarta, and a report from a field visit as part of our Religion and Tourism Course.


Islam and democracy in Indonesia after the Jakarta election

Who or what was the winner in Jakarta's recent election? Given the result of post-election exit poll from a number of organizations, it's difficult to argue against the conclusion that religion played a significant role in Ahok's defeat. More importantly, as Zainal Abidin Bagir argues, sectarian groups have succeeded in scaling up their agenda through the election. (Indonesian)  Read more 

Scholar of Indonesian politics Ian Wilson recently wrote that inequality is a big problem in Jakarta and was a "significant shaping force" in the Jakarta election. Arguing that we can't neglect the significant role of religion in the election, this translation of an article by CRCS staff member Azis Anwar originally appeared in New Mandala (translation by Liam Gammon).  Read more 

Indonesia is home to environmental movements, either led by environmental activists or by indigenous people. Does religion play a role in these movements? Are these movements related to the growing global environmental movement? Jonathan D. Smith, a PhD student in Theology and Religious Studies at Leeds, shares his view. Read more 

As an American working in Indonesia since 1981, Laine Berman shares her personal view on the rise of Trump and what Indonesians can learn from this controversial presidency. This is the second of the Voices from America series. Read more 

The "Keistimewaan" crisis: Violence against minorities in Yogyakarta

Yogyakarta has long been a safe home  for many traditions and beliefs. However, the "Special Region" has recently gained attention due to acts of vigilantism against minorities. This leads to question whether Yogyakarta has become intolerant. In this publication, CRCS argues that the intolerance is not only symptom of the rise of religious conservatism, but also due to the changing structural and political landscape among Yogyakarta's elites. (Indonesian) Read more 

As part of the course on Religion and Tourism, CRCS students visited two sites, Gua Maria in Ambarawa and Makam Sunan Pandanaran in Klaten. During this field visit, students investigated on how tourism, religion, and even politics are intertwined within the tourism industry, and gathered data to test theories on religion and tourism learned in class. Read more 

Absolutizing one's interpretation of Islam as if it's the same as that which God wants is a problem. This report details the discussion of newest book by Mizan's CEO Dr Haidar Bagir at the State Islamic University (UIN) Sunan Kalijaga's Laboratorium for Quranic and Hadith Studies in Yogyakarta (Indonesian) Read more 

Can the Papal encyclical Laudato Si' respond to environmental destruction in the Indonesian context? This was the topic of a discussion held by the Catholic youth organization (MUDIKA) of the St. Antonius parish community in Kotabaru, Yogyakarta. (Indonesian) Read more 


Intersession Seminars 2017

CRCS welcomes graduate students and the public to enroll in the intersession seminars on religious and cross-cultural studies for credit or as auditors. Each course is offered for 3 credits (SKS) and conducted in English. Each meets twice weekly, 3 hours per meeting, for a total of twelve meetings. The courses will be held between May 15 and July 31, with a two-week break for the Eid holiday. Three courses are offered, namely Religion and Human Rights, Muslim-Buddhist Relations and the Image of the Enemy.

CRCS-ICRS Wednesday Forum

May 10: Sacred architecture: Shared histories and the evolution of symbols by Edit Dunn (upcoming)

May 3: Can "religion and science" be postcolonial? by Lisa Stenmark 

April 26: From a convert's perspective by Katrin Bandel

April 19: Perceiving Islam and Muslims in Poland by Anna M. Mackowiak

April 12: Islamic education in Yogyakarta's public high schools by Martin Sawyer French

Copyright © 2017 CRCS UGM, All rights reserved.
Newsletter of May 2017

The Center for Religious and Cross-cultural Studies (CRCS) is a master's program in Religious Studies and a research center at the Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Studies at Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM).
Gedung Sekolah Pascasarjana UGM Floors 3 & 4
Jl. Teknika Utara, Pogung, Yogyakarta, Indonesia 55281
Telephone/Fax : + 62274-544976. Email:



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Center for Religious and Cross-Cultural Studies (CRCS), Universitas Gadjah Mada · Gedung Sekolah Pascasarjana UGM Lantai III – IV, Jalan Teknika Utara, Pogung · Yogyakarta 55281 · Indonesia

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