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Public sphere contest ation: configuration of political Islam in contemporary Indonesia

, PP. 123-149

Keywords: Indonesian Islam, V ariant, Public Sphere, Contestation

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Abstract:

Argument in this paper draws upon Habermasian understanding of the distinction between private and public sphere. Public sphere is understood as open space that various social and cultural forces seek to define and occupy by ways of rational interests and public reason. Such attempts take place on daily basis and taken by groups of different backgrounds and interests. Private sphere, in contrast, is conceived of as having domestic or individual characteristics and, more or less, non-political. It is within this framework that the continuing presence of multiple variants of political Islam in Indonesia has been a manifestation of contestation over public sphere. Diverse variants of Indonesian political Islam reveal the difference between actors and issues in the dynamics of their contention. However , evidence makes clear that variants of both political and popular Islam have been more dominant than other Islamic variants such progressive and neotraditionalist Islam. This study argues that mode of Islamic articulations in Indonesia is now more diverse as the it has developed not only in the articulatory forms of modernist, revivalist and traditionalist but also progressive, neo-traditionalist and popular Islam.

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