Although over eighty percent of the country is Muslim, Indonesia is marked by an extraordinary diversity in language, ancestry, culture, religion and ways of life. This book focuses on the Christian Dani of West Papua, providing a social and ethnographic history of the most important indigenous population in the troubled province. It presents a fascinating overview of the Dani’s conversion to Christianity, examining the social, religious and political uses to which they have put their new religion.
Based on independent research carried out over many years among the Dani people, the book provides an abundance of new material on religious and political events in West Papua. Underlining the heart of Christian-Muslim rivalries, the book questions the fate of religion in late-modern times.
Table of Contents
Preface Acknowledgments 1. Conflicting Visions and Constructing Identities: Beyond Splendid Isolation 2. The Western Mission Enterprise and the New Order’s New Society: Instilling the Visions 3. Jayapura and Transformations of the New Society: Down from the Mountain 4. Secularizing Society: The Struggle of Christianity in West Papua 5. The Vision of the Church: The New Jerusalem 6. The Desecularization of Dani Religiosity and Identity: "All in the Making" 7. Conclusion: Beyond Mission Christianity
Charles E. Farhadian is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Westmont College, Santa Barbara, California. He holds a masters degree from Yale University and a PhD from Boston University. His research interests and publications have addressed Indonesia, Christianity, Islam, the politics of cultural identity, and the relationship between religions and cultures. He is currently completing a comparative project on Christianity, cultures, and worship worldwide.