State and Statecraft in Old Java: A Study of the Later Mataram Period, 16th to 19th Century

State and Statecraft in Old Java: A Study of the Later Mataram Period, 16th to 19th Century

State and Statecraft in Old Java: A Study of the Later Mataram Period, 16th to 19th Century

State and Statecraft in Old Java: A Study of the Later Mataram Period, 16th to 19th Century

Synopsis

Mr. Soemarsaid Moertono was born in East Java in 1922 and entered the Indonesian Civil Service in 1944. In 1962, before he came to the United States, he was teaching at Malang in the Academy of Public Administration under the auspices of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. In 1964 he successfully submitted this study as a M.A. thesis in the Department of History, Cornell University. Several Indonesian Dutch scholars, as well as contemporary Dutch observers, have examined aspects of Javanese government during the Later Mataram period, but few studies are at present available in the English language. The outstanding exception, to which Mr. Moertono pays tribute, is the late Professor Schrieke's Indonesian Sociological Studies, Volume II, The Hague, 1957, which is a translation of some of Professor Schrieke's unpublished manuscripts. In addition to published Dutch sources, Mr. Moertono has used his own substantial knowledge of Javanese literature, and, as a result, the reader of this study has the sensation that he is being helped to see the situation in Later Mataram from within. The reader will become aware of the rich contents of the Javanese sources, for which Dr. Th. G. Th. Pigeaud has recently provided a valuable survey in the first volume of his Literature of Java, The Hague, 1967. Perhaps students will be attracted to the study of the almost entirely unexplored Javanese context of Dutch activities in Java. Students of contemporary and near-contemporary Java will certainly wish to take into account the background of political ideas which Mr. Moertono has reconstructed and analyzed. Readers will use this study for a variety of purposes in addition to its contribution to the history of the Later Mataram period. For example, some of the technical terms for describing the attributes of kingship are derived from Sanskrit, and they are also found in Cambodian epigraphy and can be studied in Professor George Coedes' Inscriptions du Cam-bodge. Thus an aid is offered for the comparative study of government in earlier South East Asia. Another aspect of Mr. Moertono's work which may attract attention is his observations on the education necessary for the cultivation of suitable moral and practical qualities in the service of the king. The reader may ask himself whether he is dealing with increasingly obsolete features of Javanese culture or with a culture which possessed the capacity for self-renewal. This is a question which cannot be broached until scholarship has advanced sufficiently to permit historical insights . . .

Excerpt

Mr. Soemarsaid Moertono was born in East Java in 1922 and entered the Indonesian Civil Service in 1944. In 1962, before he came to the United States, he was teaching at Malang in the Academy of Public Administration under the auspices of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. In 1964 he successfully submitted this study as a M.A. thesis in the Department of History, Cornell University.

For some years students at Cornell have benefited from Mr. Moertono’s work, and the Southeast Asia Program has decided that a wider public should have the same advantage. We are grateful to the author for giving his permission for the publication of his thesis as a CMIP monograph. We are especially grateful to Mrs. Arlene Lev, who undertook the responsibility of editing the manuscript. She did so, in her own words, as “a labor of love,” for Mr. Moertono, during his two years at Cornell, never failed to put his knowledge at the disposal of the many who consulted him, always displaying a modesty and charm which no one who knew him will quickly forget.

Several Indonesian Dutch scholars, as well as contemporary Dutch observers, have examined aspects of Javanese government during the Later Mataram period, but few studies are at present available in the English language. The outstanding exception, to which Mr. Moertono pays tribute, is the late Professor Schrieke’s Indonesian Sociological Studies, Volume II, The Hague, 1957, which is a translation of some of Professor Schrieke’s unpublished manuscripts. In addition to published Dutch sources, Mr. Moertono has used his own substantial knowledge of Javanese literature, and, as a result, the reader of this study has the sensation that he is being helped to see the situation in Later Mataram from within. The reader will become aware of the rich contents of the . . .

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