Native Indonesians, or Pribumi (literally "inlanders"), are members of the population group in Indonesia that shares a similar sociocultural and ethnic heritage whose members are considered natives of the country. The term native Indonesians should not be confused with the more generic term Indonesians or Indonesian citizens.
|c. 210 million
(Worldwide; 2006 estimate)
|Regions with significant populations|
|Indonesia c. 200 million|
|United Arab Emirates||75,000|
(Javanese, Sundanese, Malay, etc)
|Islam (Predominantly Sunnis, Shias and others), Christianity (Protestantism and Roman Catholicism), Hindu Dharma, Buddhism, Animism, Shamanism, Sunda Wiwitan, Kaharingan, Parmalim, Kejawen, Naurus, Aluk' To Dolo|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Austronesians, Mongoloids,Polynesians, Papuans, Negritos, Melanesians, other Indonesians|
a The figure in Malaysia merely assert those who holds an Indonesian citizenship, the figure doesn't include Malaysian who have some Indonesian ancestry which potentially double or triple of figure, due to the constant migration since millennia ago.
Etymology and historical contextEdit
In ancient Java, the ideas of native versus foreign identities are usually confined into ethno-cultural and language boundaries, as the ideas of Javanese identity being developed. The Kaladi inscription (c. 909 CE), mentioned Kmir (Khmer people of Khmer kingdom) together with Campa (Champa) and Rman (Mon) as foreigners from mainland Southeast Asia that frequently came to Java to trade. The Anjukladang inscription (c. 937 CE) mentioned about infiltration attack from Malayu (which refer to a Srivijayan attack). In this inscription, the ideas of native Javanese is contrasted to its "foreign nemesis", the Malays of Sumatra.
The ethnic composition in the archipelago grew to be more complex with the arrival of the people of foreign origin. Following the adoption of Hinduism, the Southern Indians called by natives as Keling began to arrive in archipelago in the early first millennia, and followed suit by fellow Indians when Tamils began to settles in several ports of Sumatra after the decline of Srivijaya circa 11th century. Also the arrivals of Chinese traders and settlers which intensify since Majapahit era, through the arrival of Zheng He's treasure fleet to Indonesia circa early 15th century. Around the same time, Muslim traders from India and Arabia also began to settle in the region. Caucasian white European arrived when Portuguese began to ruled and settle in Portuguese Malacca in 1511. Thus the ideas of racial identity to describe the differences between the native of the archipelago in contrast to the neighboring Asian foreigners and European white began to take root during early stages of European colonialism in Indonesia circa 16th to 17th century.
By 17th century, the Dutch East India Company began to get involved intensively in the archipelago, especially in Java, Molluccas and Sumatra. By the 19th century, the term pribumi is translated from inlander in Dutch, the term was first coined by the Dutch colonial administration to lump diverse groups of local inhabitants of Indonesia's archipelago, mostly for social discrimination purposes.
During the colonial period, the Dutch instilled a regime of three-level racial separation:
- The first class race being Europeans colonials
- The second class race being those of partial European ancestry as well as Foreign Orientals (Vreemde Oosterlingen) which includes Chinese, Arabs, and Indians
- The third class race being the natives (Inlanders), including Javanese, Malays, Dayaks, Papuans and Moluccans.
The colonial system was similar to the caste system in Hispanic America, or the South African apartheid system, which prohibited inter-racial neighborhoods (wet van wijkenstelsel) and inter-racial interactions were limited by passenstelsel laws.
The outbreak of the World War II saw the fall of colonial state of Dutch East Indies. During Japanese occupation, the Dutch colonials were put into the lowest class of social strata. Native blood was the only thing that could free Indos (mixed Eurasian ancenstry) from being put into concentration camps. The following Indonesian Revolution (1945-1949) saw the rise of Indonesian Republic, subsequently the revolution has brought a drastic social changes. The Dutch colonials and the Indos are suspiciously considered by republicans as Dutch loyalist, thus they are not a desired element in the newly established republic. By 1950s, large numbers of Dutch colonials and Indos were being repatriated to the Netherlands.
After the revolution, the natives majority has gained the political, social and economic power previously reserved only for Dutch colonials. In post colonial Indonesia, the Chinese Indonesians are the most significant minority group that being categorized as non-pribumi (non native).
Pribumi make up about 95% of the Indonesian population. Using Indonesia’s population estimate in 2006, this translates to about 230 million people. As an umbrella of similar cultural heritage among various ethnic groups in Indonesia, Pribumi culture plays a significant role in shaping the country’s socioeconomic circumstance.
The United States Library of Congress Country Study of Indonesia defines Pribumi as:
Literally, an indigene, or native. In the colonial era, the great majority of the population of the archipelago came to regard themselves as indigenous, in contrast to the non-indigenous Dutch and Chinese (and, to a degree, Arab) communities. After independence the distinction persisted, expressed as a dichotomy between elements that were pribumi and those that were not. The distinction has had significant implications for economic development policy— Indonesia: A Country Study, Glossary
The largest ethnic group in Indonesia are the Javanese people who make up 41% of the total population. The Javanese are concentrated on the island of Java but millions have migrated to other islands throughout the archipelago. The Sundanese, Malay, and Madurese are the next largest groups in the country. Many ethnic groups, particularly in Kalimantan and the province of Papua, have only hundreds of members. Most of the local languages belong to the Austronesian language family, although a significant number, particularly in Papua, speak Papuan languages.
The division and classification of ethnic groups in Indonesia is not rigid and in some cases are unclear as the result of migrations, along with cultural and linguistic influences; for example some[who?] may agree that the Bantenese and Cirebonese belong to different ethnic groups with their own distinct dialect, however others[who?] might consider them to be Javanese sub-ethnicities, as members of the larger Javanese people. The same considerations may apply to the Baduy people who share so many similarities with the Sundanese people that they can be considered as belonging to the same ethnic group. The clearest example of hybrid ethnicity are the Betawi people, the result of a mixture of different native ethnicities that have merged with people of Arab, Chinese and Indian origins since the era of colonial Batavia (Jakarta).
The proportional populations of Native Indonesians according to the (2009 census) is as follows:
|Ethnic groups||Population (million)||Percentage||Main Regions|
|Javanese||95.217||40.2||Central Java, Yogyakarta, East Java, Lampung, Jakarta|
|Sundanese||31.765||15.4||West Java, Banten, Lampung|
|Malay||8.789||4.1||Sumatra eastern coast, West Kalimantan|
|Madurese||6.807||3.3||Madura island, East Java|
|Bugis||6.000||2.9||South Sulawesi, East Kalimantan|
|Minangkabau||5.569||2.7||West Sumatra, Riau|
|Betawi||5.157||2.5||Jakarta, Banten, West Java|
|Banjarese||4.800||2.3||South Kalimantan, East Kalimantan|
|Bantenese||4.331||2.1||Banten, West Java|
|Dayak||3.009||1.5||North Kalimantan, West Kalimantan,Central Kalimantan|
|Sasak||3.000||1.4||West Nusa Tenggara|
|Cirebonese||1.856||0.9||West Java, Central Java|
The skin color of native Indonesians ranges from fair skin with yellowish undertone to light brown to very dark brown or black skin color. Archaeologist Peter Bellwood claims that the "vast majority" of people in Indonesia and Malaysia, the region he calls the "clinal Mongoloid-Australoid zone", are "Southern Mongoloids" but have a "high degree" of Australoid admixture.
Sawo matang (lit. "ripe sapodilla") usually refers to the skin colour of the Pribumis in Indonesia which connotes "mid light to dark tone brown" especially for those who live in Java, Bali, Sumatra, etc. For other places like in Borneo, Sulawesi, and eastern parts of Indonesia, native people tend to have darker skin colour who actually come from the east of Indonesia[clarification needed] and for those who live in high altitude areas and highlands tend to have lighter skin colour like people from Manado, Tomohon, etc. For islandic people,[clarification needed] they tend to have dark skin colour which all of the physical characteristics depend on the geographical areas they inhabit.
Most Native Indonesians are genetically close to Asians while the more eastern one goes the more people show Melanesian affinity. Geneticist Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza claims that there is a genetic division between East and Southeast Asians. In a similar manner, Zhou Jixu agrees that there is a physical difference between these two populations. Other geneticists have found evidence for four separate populations, carrying distinct sets of non-recombining Y chromosome lineages, within the traditional Mongoloid category: North Asians, Han Chinese, Japanese and Southeast Asians. The complexity of genetic data has led to doubt about the usefulness of the concept of a Mongoloid race itself, since distinctive East Asian features may represent separate lineages and arise from environmental adaptations or retention of common proto-Eurasian ancestral characteristics.
The regions of Indonesia have some of their indigenous ethnic groups. Due to migration within Indonesia (as part of government transmigration programs or otherwise), there are significant populations of ethnic groups who reside outside of their traditional regions.
- Java: Javanese, Sundanese, Bantenese, Betawi, Tengger, Osing, Badui
- Madura: Madurese
- Sumatra: Malays, Batak, Minangkabau, Acehnese, Lampung, Kubu
- Kalimantan: Malays, Dayak, Banjar
- Sulawesi: Makassarese, Buginese, Mandar, Minahasa, Buton, Gorontalo, Toraja, Bajau, Mongondow People, Buroko People, Bolango Tribe
- Lesser Sunda Islands: Balinese, Sasak
- The Moluccas: Nuaulu, Manusela, Wemale
- Papua: Dani, Bauzi, Asmat
Malaysia shares a border with Indonesia and both countries share many aspects of their culture, including mutually intelligible national languages. Populations have long moved between the areas which make up the modern-day states. Many people from Java, Kalimantan, Sumatra, and Sulawesi, which are located in modern-day Indonesia, migrated and settled to the Malay Peninsula and some to the Malaysian Borneo since time immemorial. These earlier populations have mostly effectively or partially assimilated with the larger Malaysian-Malay community due to religious, social and cultural similarities. Currently, it is also estimated that there are around 2 million Indonesian citizens in Malaysia at any given time, ranging from all types of background with a significant majority of them consisting of labour migrants, with a considerable number of professionals and students.
Indonesian pilgrims have long lived in Hejaz, a region along the west coast of Saudi Arabia. Among them was Ahmad Khatib, who served as the Imam of the Shafi'i school of law at the mosque known as Masjidil Haram, Mecca. Today, most of Indonesians in Saudi Arabia are female domestic workers, with a minority of other types of labour migrants and students. Most of the santri extension studied in Saudi, as well as Al Azhar University in Cairo.
In the United States, most Indonesians are students and professionals. Boston University, University of California and Harvard University are some of the favorite schools for Indonesian people. In the Silicon Valley region of Northern California, there are many Indonesian-American engineers working in the high-tech industry.
The Malays in Singapore (Malay: Orang Melayu Singapura) make up about 14% of the country's population. Most of them came from Indonesia. In the 19th century, Singapore was part of Johor-Riau Sultanate. Many Indonesian people, mainly Bugi and Minangkabau settled in Singapore. From 1886 till 1890, as many as 21,000 Javanese became bonded labourers with the Singapore Chinese Protectorate, an organisation formed by the British in 1877 to monitor the Chinese population. They performed manual labour in the rubber plantations. After their bond ended, they continued to open up the land and stayed on in Johore. Famous Singaporeans of Indonesian descent are the first president of Singapore Yusof bin Ishak, and Zubir Said who composed the national anthem of Singapore Majulah Singapura.
Indonesia was the colony of the Netherlands. Early 20th century, many Indonesian students studied in the Netherlands. Most of them lived in Leiden and active in Indonesian Vereeniging. During Indonesian National Revolution, many Moluccans migrated to the Netherlands. Most of them were ex KNIL army. In this way around 12,500 persons were settled in the Netherlands. Giovanni Van Bronckhorst, Denny Landzaat, Roy Makaay, Mia Audina, and Daniel Sahuleka are famous people of Indonesian ancestry in the Netherlands.
Before Dutch and British sailors arrived in Australia, the Indonesians from Southern Sulawesi explored Australia northern coast. Each year, Bugi sailors would sail down on the northwestern monsoon in their wooden pinisi. They would stay in Australia for several months to trade and take tripang (dried sea cucumber) before returning to Makassar on the dry season offshore winds. These trading voyages continued until 1907. Furthermore, the Cocos Malays are descendants of native Indonesians were brought by the Clunies-Ross family to work in the copra industry in the 19th century.
The Indonesian people, mainly Javanese, make up 15% of the population Suriname. In the 19th century, the Dutch sent the Javanese to Suriname as contract workers in plantations. The most famous person of Indonesian descent is Paul Somohardjo as the speaker of the National Assembly of Suriname.
United Arab EmiratesEdit
Like its other neighbors Malaysia and Singapore, Indonesia also shares a close and important history with the Philippines, as the two countries underwent migrations and back-migrations in their ancient histories. The southern parts of the Philippines were under the jurisprudence of the Majapahit Empire, the Laguna Copperplate Inscription also records interactions between the native Tagalog kingdoms in present-day Manila and that of the Kingdom of Medang. The eastern parts of North Kalimantan were part of the historical Sultanate of Sulu. According to Visayan legend, the Rajahnate of Cebu was found by a Sumatran prince by the name of Sri Lumay. Rajah Baguinda was a Minangkabau prince who migrated to the Sulu Archipelago. In the 1600s, during the colonial era, Spanish soldiers deported the Sultan of Ternate and his family to Manila, after conquering and capturing the Ternate Sultanate.
Today, Indonesians in the Philippines number anywhere from 43,871 to 101,720. They mostly reside in the island of Mindanao, in the Muslim parts with a noticeable community in Davao City that has an international school for the overseas community. They tend to be protective of their separate ethnic identity. Most are Muslims, while many others are also Christian - who, come from Minahasan-speaking ancestry.
Traditional performing artsEdit
Indonesia is home to various styles of music, with those from the islands of Java, Sumatra and Bali being frequently recorded. The traditional music of west, central, East Java and Bali is the gamelan.
Dangdut is a very popular music genre among the "Pribumis" across Indonesia. Kroncong is also a musical genre that uses guitars and ukuleles as the main musical instruments. This genre had its roots in Portugal and was introduced by Portuguese traders in the fifteenth century. There is a traditional Keroncong Tugu music group in North Jakarta and other traditional Keroncong music groups in Maluku, with strong Portuguese influences. This music genre was popular in the first half of the twentieth century; a contemporary form of Kroncong is called Pop Kroncong.
Angklung musical orchestra, native of West Java, received international recognition as UNESCO has listed the traditional West Java musical instrument made from bamboo in the list of intangible cultural heritage.
The soft Sasando music from the province of East Nusa Tenggara in West Timor is completely different. Sasando uses an instrument made from a split leaf of the Lontar palm (Borassus flabellifer), which bears some resemblance to a harp.
Indonesian dance reflects the diversity of culture from ethnic groups that composed the nation of Indonesia. Austronesian roots and Melanesian tribal dance forms are visible, and influences ranging from neighboring Asian countries; such as India, China, and Middle East to European western styles through colonization. Each ethnic group has their own distinct dances; makes total dances in Indonesia are more than 3000 Indonesian original dances. However, the dances of Indonesia can be divided into three eras; the Prehistoric Era, the Hindu/Buddhist Era and the Era of Islam, and into two genres; court dance and folk dance.
There is a continuum in the traditional dances depicting episodes from the Ramayana and Mahabharata from India, ranging through Thailand, all the way to Bali. There is a marked difference, though, between the highly stylized dances of the courts of Yogyakarta and Surakarta and their popular variations. While the court dances are promoted and even performed internationally, the popular forms of dance art and drama must largely be discovered locally.
Drama and theatreEdit
Wayang, the Javanese, Sundanese, and Balinese shadow puppet theatre shows display several mythological legends such as Ramayana and Mahabharata, and many more. Wayang Orang is Javanese traditional dance drama based on wayang stories. Various Balinese dance drama also can be included within traditional form of Indonesian drama. Another form of local drama is Javanese Ludruk and Ketoprak, Sundanese Sandiwara, and Betawi Lenong. All of these drama incorporated humor and jest, often involving audiences in their performance.
Randai is a folk theatre tradition of the Minangkabau people of West Sumatra, usually performed for traditional ceremonies and festivals. It incorporates music, singing, dance, drama and the silat martial art, with performances often based on semi-historical Minangkabau legends and love story.
Modern performing art also developed in Indonesia with their distinct style of drama. Notable theatre, dance, and drama troupe such as Teater Koma are gain popularity in Indonesia as their drama often portray social and political satire of Indonesian society.
The martial art of pencak silat was thought to be created and firstly developed in the islands of Java and Sumatra. It is an art for survival and is practiced throughout Indonesian archipelago. Centuries-long tribal warfare in Indonesian history has shaped silat as it was used by the ancient warriors of Indonesia. Throughout their history, there were many wars between various indigenous tribes and kingdoms. Further, proficiency in silat was used to determine the rank and position in old Indonesian kingdoms.
Contacts with Indians and Chinese have enriched silat. Silat reached areas beyond Indonesia mainly through diaspora of Indonesian people. People from various regions like Aceh, Minangkabau, Riau, Bugis, Makassar, Java, Banjar, etc. moved into and settled in Malay Peninsula and other islands. They brought silat and passed it down to their descendants. The Indonesians of partially Dutch descent are also credited as the first to have brought silat to Europe.
Silat was used by Indonesian freedom fighters during their struggle against the Dutch colonists. Unfortunately after Indonesian independence, silat became less popular among Indonesian youth in comparison to foreign martial arts like Karate and Taekwondo. This probably because silat was not taught openly and only passed down among blood relatives, the other reason is the lack of media portrayal of the art.
Efforts have been made in recent years to popularize silat to Indonesian youth and to the world. Exhibitions and promotions by individuals as well as state-sponsored groups helped the growing of silat's popularity, particularly in Europe and United States. An Indonesian silat movie Merantau released in 2009 is one effort to introduce silat to international scene.
Another martial art from Indonesia is Tarung Derajat. It is a modern combat system created by Haji Ahmad Drajat based on his experience as a street fighter. Tarung Drajat has been acknowledge as a national sport by KONI in 1998 and is now used by the Indonesian National Armed Forces and Indonesian National Police as part of their basic training.
- Ethnic groups in Indonesia
- Culture of Indonesia
- Indonesian people
- List of Indonesian people
- National costume of Indonesia
- List of indigenous peoples
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