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Chapter Summary

Drastic political change at the national level, particularly regime change, can have a decisive impact on ethnic politics at the regional level. Local and provincial political dynamics were constrained by a framework determined by the centre. It has been demonstrated how such political change at the national level influenced Dayak politics in West Kalimantan from 1945. The fall of the New Order, which was followed by rapid democratization, gave Dayaks the opportunity to reclaim leadership in the region. They were able to pressure the government to appoint Dayaks as district heads in Sanggau and Pontianak between 1998 and 1999. Intense Dayak political activity between 1945 and 1950 was encouraged and accommodated by the Dutch. Despite the progress of decentralization, many aspects of local politics will continue to be affected by the national government and its policies. Issues of marginalization will remain central for Dayak politics.

Keywords: Dayak political activity; marginalization; Pontianak City; West Kalimantan



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