Merle Ricklefs, Indonesian History Expert, Died in Australia

IMPERIUMDAILY.COM-MELBOURNE – Merle Calvin Ricklefs, an Indonesian history expert from Australia, passed away on Sunday, December 29, 2019, at 10:30 Melbourne time, Australia. The death of this prominent historian, as well as grief for academics and researchers in Indonesia.

For Indonesia, Merle Ricklefs has an important role. His scientific dedication in his life was devoted to dozens of his publications in Indonesia, which focused on the history of Mataram, Kartasura, Yogyakarta, Surakarta, Central Java.

“Yes, we are very sad. Prof. Merle Ricklefs is our teacher. The deceased is an Indonesian historian,” said Fachry Ali, an Indonesian intellectual, Sunday, December 29, 2019.

His books are rich in data from a variety of literature, primary and secondary, as well as interviews, censuses and surveys. In his book History of Modern Indonesia 1200-2008, Ricklefs tells the journey of the Indonesian people from time to time that is colorful, complete with various problems and conflicts both internal and external.

By basing its research on dozens of journals and more than five hundred books, behind the structure of the narrative, this book answers the question of how communities from various Indonesian islands, with ethnic, linguistic, and in separate kingdoms, can unite into a modern nation.

For this reason, Merle Ricklefs received the 2016 Foreign Individual Culture Award from the Government of the Republic of Indonesia. Merle Calvin Ricklefs is an Indonesian historian.

Another phenomenal work is titled Islamizing Java: History of Islamization in Java and its opponents from 1930 to the present. This book examines how the Javanese Muslim community went through difficult times since the beginning of the spread of Islam, colonialism of Dutch and Japanese colonialism, the period of independence, President Sukarno’s administration, President Soeharto’s totalitarianism, and contemporary democracy.

How the Javanese Muslim community went through these changes has now become an extraordinary example in terms of increasing Islamic religiosity.

“The history of Indonesia and especially the history of Java is a history that is very important for the world level. In addition, Javanese play an important role in various dynamics of Indonesia from social, cultural, religious, economic, and political aspects, “said Merle Rickefs.

Ricklefs received his PhD from Cornell University. He has taught at the School of Oriental and African Studies, All Souls College, Monash University, Australian National University, University of Singapore, University of Melbourne, and a number of other universities. In 2003, the Australian Government provided him with the Centenary Medal for services to the Australian community and humanities in Indonesian studies.

“My hope is that Indonesians recognize that my interest as a foreigner towards Indonesia reflects how Indonesia is a very important country at the world level. This must be a pride for Indonesians. There are so many aspects of history that need to be studied, and the importance of Indonesians to continue to see this, to study it with new information, “said Ricklefs about his hopes for the young generation of Indonesian intellectuals, at that time. (yad)

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