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Visiting Speaker: Dr Muhammad Najib Azca (Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia)

From Jihad to Local Politics: Another Picture of Radical Islamist Activism in the Contemporary Indonesia

While the image of jihad activism has been portrayed in Western media commonly associated with terrorism, my research revealed another side of the picture: it also has unique link to the new dynamic of local politics in the post-authoritarian Indonesia. Focusing on non-local actors of Islamist movements who taking part in religious communal violence in 1999-2002 in eastern Indonesia, called as holy war or jihad, the research found that those who joined in jihad mobilization comes from various networks of Islamist activism: Jihadi, Wahabi, and Political activists. The presentation will centre on jihad actors from political activism network in their post-jihad involvement in eastern Indonesia.

Event details

Combining social movement theory framework and life history approach, I examine the dynamics of identity, emotions and social networks of the non-local Muslim fighters (post-jihadists) in the post-jihad period. In this paper I will discuss the life story narratives of three post-jihadists who were involved in local politics in the aftermath of their jihad participation. Two of them joined jihad through KOMPAK (a humanitarian group affiliated with DDII, the Indonesian Council for Islamic Propagation) and another one through PKPU (a humanitarian group affiliated with Tarbiyah movement). They later engaged in local politics through the Islamic party, namely PBB (the Masyumi predecessor) and PKS (the Prosperous and Justice Party), and Islamic paramilitary group, FPI (Islamic Defender Front). My paper will contribute to understanding of consequences of jihad participation at two levels: at personal level of the biography of post-jihad actors and at societal level of the dynamics of Islamist movements in general. It will also contribute to knowledge of demobilization processes and the re-stabilization of identity politics within the framework of social movement studies.

Dr_Azca___Poster.pdfVisiting Speaker: Dr Muhammad Najib Azca (505K)


IAIS Building/LT2