Hearing women's voices, contesting women's bodies in post New Order Indonesia
Hatley, BL, Hearing women's voices, contesting women's bodies in post New Order Indonesia, Intersections: Gender and Sexuality in Asia and the Pacific, (16) pp. 1-22. ISSN 1440-9151 (2008) [Refereed Article]
Over the last decade in Indonesia there has been a striking increase in the public presence
of women. Sexualised display of women's bodies, already flourishing in the mass media
boom of the 1990s, has expanded further with the relaxation of the ideological restrictions
and media controls of the Suharto era. Women authors, once a rarity in literary circles, now
publish prolifically, producing works marked by frank depictions of sexual issues and
encounters which have been assigned the collective label of sastra wangi, 'perfumed
literature.' Vigorous debates of gender issues take place in the mass media. Women have
also become more politically involved as women's NGO groups and networks, mobilised in
the movement against Suharto, continue their activities into post-Suharto times.
Campaigns for greater formal political representation of women resulted in the passing of a
law in 2003 recognising the principle that all political parties contesting elections should have
at least 30 per cent female candidates.
Indonesia, sexualised display, female bodies, women, gender issues, sastra wangi,