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Open Access Vigilante Citizenship: Sovereign Practices and the Politics of Insult in Indonesia

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Vigilante Citizenship: Sovereign Practices and the Politics of Insult in Indonesia

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Abstract This article examines the informal authority wielded by civilian security groups (pamswakarsa) on the island of Lombok. Taking as its point of departure the Balinese minority’s plan to build a large Hindu temple in northern Lombok, the article shows how the project was thwarted by a combination of rumours, pamphlets, violence as well as legal obstacles from district and provincial authorities. Outlining how the campaign against the temple gained momentum, I suggest that rumours and documents issued by a security force claiming to represent the island’s Muslim majority played an important role in preventing the realization of the temple. Discussing the ‘conviviality’ between non-state security groups and state officials in post-Suharto Lombok, I argue that civilian security groups exercise a form of vigilante citizenship.

Affiliations: 1: Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI) Bergen kari.telle@cmi.no

10.1163/22134379-12340029
/content/journals/10.1163/22134379-12340029
dcterms_title,pub_keyword,dcterms_description,pub_author
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Abstract This article examines the informal authority wielded by civilian security groups (pamswakarsa) on the island of Lombok. Taking as its point of departure the Balinese minority’s plan to build a large Hindu temple in northern Lombok, the article shows how the project was thwarted by a combination of rumours, pamphlets, violence as well as legal obstacles from district and provincial authorities. Outlining how the campaign against the temple gained momentum, I suggest that rumours and documents issued by a security force claiming to represent the island’s Muslim majority played an important role in preventing the realization of the temple. Discussing the ‘conviviality’ between non-state security groups and state officials in post-Suharto Lombok, I argue that civilian security groups exercise a form of vigilante citizenship.

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/content/journals/10.1163/22134379-12340029
2013-01-01
2016-12-11

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