Jun 24, 2024 Last Updated 5:50 AM, Jun 24, 2024

Here's looking at you, kids

Here's looking at you, kids
Published: Jul 15, 2007


Ben Harkness and Jo Pickles

At a time when Indonesia is in international news headlines with more terrorist bombings, bird flu, rioting over petrol price increases and the shooting of bombing mastermind Azahari, it is easy to overlook young people, Indonesia’s most vibrant social segment.

Young people are famous for being open to new ideas, for experimenting with fads and creating and following fashions. They look beyond social roles, think differently to their parents and introduce social change.

Indonesian youth have frequently played pivotal roles in Indonesia’s journey as a nation. Beginning in 1928 with the Youth Pledge, to the student-lead push for the resignation of President Suharto, the energy of young people has often provided a significant driving force behind social and political reform.

But what does it mean to be young in today’s Indonesia?

Contributors to this edition look at the way young Indonesians express themselves, enjoy themselves and discover themselves. Youth culture in Indonesia is full of enthusiasm, dynamism and contradiction. It is sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll, noughties style.

We see the dangerous and the daring side of life. Joanne Dowling reveals the excitement and mayhem of Jakarta’s illegal drag races. And Jo Pickles delves into the underground lifestyles of Jakarta’s railroad junkies in her discussion of heroin addiction.

Uttu leads us through the capitalist conundrum of the alternative youth fashion scene, a scene that once prided itself on political subversion. The popularity of chick-flick-teen-pics has put girl culture back on the silver screen, but Hapsari Sulistyani questions whether young female protagonists challenge or conform to gender roles.

We hope this edition brings out the youth in everyone.

Ben Harkness (ben.harkness@gmail.com) is a graduate medical student at Sydney University and Jo Pickles (Joanna.Pickles@anu.edu.au) is a masters student at the Australian National University. Both are guest editors of Inside Indonesia.

Inside Indonesia 85: Jan-Mar 2006

Latest Articles

Obit: Bob Muntz, 1947-2024

Jun 24, 2024 - HELEN PAUSACKER

Memeing the precarity of Indonesian startup workers

Jun 20, 2024 - IBNU NADZIR

Beyond the hype, workers in this booming industry are seeking not only comic relief, but real improvements in their conditions. An Instagram account is helping with both.

Dancing into the elections

Jun 17, 2024 - VICTORIA WINATA & MONIKA WINARNITA

The replacement of dangdut with TikTok dances in the 2024 elections heralds a massive demographic shift in Indonesian political campaigning and beyond

Labouring in vain?

May 03, 2024 - HASNA A. FADHILAH

The Labour Party (Partai Buruh) was revived in the wake of opposition to the Omnibus Law on Job Creation, but failure in the 2024 election shows they failed to connect...

Book review: Uncovering Suharto's Cold War

Apr 19, 2024 - VIRDIKA RIZKY UTAMA

Subscribe to Inside Indonesia

Receive Inside Indonesia's latest articles and quarterly editions in your inbox.

Bacaan Bumi: Pemikiran Ekologis – sebuah suplemen Inside Indonesia

Lontar Modern Indonesia

Lontar-Logo-Ok

 

A selection of stories from the Indonesian classics and modern writers, periodically published free for Inside Indonesia readers, courtesy of Lontar.