Orginal Publication Date
Explorations in Ethnic Studies
Over the centuries, the Chinese minority in Indonesia has lived in an environment characterized by social tensions. This paper will explore Chinese-Javanese relations in the microcosm of a Javanese squatter settlement that has invaded a Chinese cemetery. Four issues will be considered which will illustrate the nature of long-standing tensions between these two ethnic groups: 1) the manner in which informal sector housing is developed; 2) economic attitudes of the Javanese with respect to the Chinese; 3) the relationship of the Chinese to law and authority and how conflict resolution is approached ; and 4) the linguistic context of Chinese-Javanese relations. Although cemetery squatting has been an incremental process, it has been the result of a fundamental perception of the weak position of the Chinese in Javanese society. Similarly, the illegal occupation of land also results from perceptions that both the Chinese and public officials will ultimately acquiesce to the squatters' aspirations.
Copyright, ©EES, The National Association for Ethnic Studies, 1995