Islam and Nation: Separatist Rebellion in Aceh, Indonesia

Synopsis

Rooted in the latest theoretical debates about nationalism and ethnicity, yet written in an accessible and engaging style, Islam and Nation presents a fascinating study of the genesis, growth and decline of a nationalist movement.

Drawing on hundreds of interviews with nationalist leaders, activists and guerillas, Aspinall reveals how the Free Aceh Movement went from being a quixotic fantasy to a guerilla army in the space of a generation, leading to a bitter conflict in which thousands perished. And by exploring the complex relationship between Islam and nationalism, Aspinall also explains how a society famed for its Islamic piety gave rise to a guerilla movement that ended up rejecting the Islamic goals of its forebears.

Islam and Nation is a tour de force in the study of nationalist politics. It will be of great interest to readers concerned about Southeast Asia, Islamic politics, ethnic conflict and nationalism everywhere.