An Identity to Retain: Self-Expressive Chinese Indonesians under the Rule of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono

Enny Ingketria


From the Dutch colonial era until the end of Suharto administration, Chinese Indonesians have perpetually been the victims of racial prejudice and negative stereotyping addressed by pribumi. However, the most difficult situations and unpleasant experiences occurred under Suharto's New Order, where the forced assimilation policy was implemented and Chinese Indonesians at that time were drawn to Chinese films and series to search for their Chinese-ness, while escaping reality. The previous researches did not provide comprehensive studies on the identity formation of Chinese Indonesians in Post-Suharto era, especially after the reformation era, under different presidents. Therefore, the subjective reality of third and fourth generations of Chinese Indonesians who spent their adolescence and/or adulthood over the course of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY)’s tenure has been explored in this study. From the constructive nature of reality to the situational constraints that shape inquiry, the Chinese Indonesians were indeed more emotionally expressive, supported by a more stable political and economic condition, exposure to the new media, and enhanced bilateral partnership between China and Indonesia. The use of new media in disseminating the Chinese cultural values through the media product, as well as the Chinese cultural practice publicly held by mostly Chinese communities in Indonesia became the influential factors in connecting those younger generations of Chinese Indonesia to their heritage. Ethnic pride and cultural long-distance nationalism can be eventually observed.

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International Journal of Social Science Studies   ISSN 2324-8033 (Print)   ISSN 2324-8041 (Online)

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