Protection and repatriation of cultural heritage – country report: Indonesia

Smith, E. , Ristiawan, R. and Sudarmadi, T. (2022) Protection and repatriation of cultural heritage – country report: Indonesia. Santander Art and Culture Law Review, 2022(2), pp. 383-406. (doi: 10.4467/2450050XSNR.22.025.17038)

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This article provides a broad overview of Indonesia’s current post-independence legislation and practice with respect to cultural heritage protection and repatriation. We highlight several challenges that hamper the effective implementation and enforcement of this framework, particularly in relation to repatriation processes of foreign-held cultural objects. We furthermore explore how the State-centric discourse that surrounds Indonesia’s cultural heritage protection and repatriation policies impede locally-led activism related to cultural heritage, particularly in relation to value production and sense of ownership. Overall, we highlight the importance of co-creation in knowledge production processes and crime-prevention methods concerning cultural heritage to maximize effectiveness. Agency, access, and ownership were violently removed through the colonial looting of Indonesian cultural heritage, so the first step towards restorative justice should be reinstating this to the communities of origin, or to the Indonesian government when the rightful origin community cannot be identified. This concerns not only the cultural objects themselves, but also their digital and physical lives, i.e. the knowledge and expertise created based on these objects.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Smith, Dr Emiline
Authors: Smith, E., Ristiawan, R., and Sudarmadi, T.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Journal Name:Santander Art and Culture Law Review
Publisher:Uniwersytet Jagiellonski - Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Jagiellonskiego
ISSN (Online):2450-050X
Published Online:18 April 2023
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2023 The Authors
First Published:First published in Santander Art and Culture Law Review 2022(2): 383-406
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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