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This Week: Covid-19 in Indonesia

The logo of the Cornell Indonesian Association
October 20, 2020

Two events this week will focus on Covid-19 in Indonesia, with a third panel on language training in Indonesian. Register now for this week's Gatty Lecture and the 20th Northeast Conference on Indonesia this Saturday!

Gatty Lecture: Indonesia's Im/moral Turn: Drivers and Consequences, Especially in a Covid-19 World

Thursday, October 22, 2020 at 8:00pm EDT

Register now this week's Gatty Lecture by Sharyn Davies, Associate Professor and Director of the Herb Feith Indonesian Engagement Centre at Monash University. 

Indonesia is experiencing an im/moral turn. We see this in the push to make all sexual activity outside heteronormative marriage illegal. If that bill is passed, it would be a radical move for a country that’s never criminalised homosexuality, and that has for the most part considered private consenting adult sexual activities a matter for individuals not the state. Other examples of the im/moral turn include the 2016 ‘LGBT crises’ and the 2020 proposed Family Resilience bill. Such more are stark clues revealing the direction Indonesia is taking when it comes to punitive sexual surveillance. The antecedents of these moves—which we might collectively call Indonesia’s im/moral turn—are much deeper and can be traced to the early years of democratic reform. 

This talk will explore the drivers and consequences of Indonesia’s im/moral turn, with reflection on the impact of Covid-19. In particular I will focus on the impact of Covid-19 and the increasing punitive surveillance of sexuality on the provision of healthcare. 

"Panel Bahasa" Indonesian and Regional Language Trainings across the Nusantara Archipelago

Friday, October 23, 2020 at 8:00pm EDT

The Indonesian Programs at Cornell and Yale are going to host virtual Panel Bahasa Indonesian and Regional Language Trainings across the Nusantara Archipelago to commemorate the 92nd Youth Oath on Friday, October 23, 9-10:30 PM EST. The panel will be the pre- conference event for the 20th Northeast Conference on Indonesia, a bilingual conference hosted by Cornell and Yale since 2008. The conference will take place on Saturday, October 24, 9:00 AM - 05:00 PM EDT.

The panel will include presentations and information sharing from nine institutions representing three Indonesian time zones: Eastern Zone (Universitas Cenderawasih in Papua Province, Universitas Pattimura in Molucca Province, Universitas Nusa Cendana in Northeastern Islands Province); Central Zone (Mataram Lingua Franca Institute in Southwestern Islands Province, Universitas Lambung Mangkurat in South Kalimantan Province, Universitas Atma Jaya in South Sulawesi Province); and Western Indonesia (Universitas Satya Wacana in Central Java Province, Universitas Bung Hatta in West Sumatera Province, Universitas Sumatera Utara in North Sumatera Province). These institutions will present the Indonesian and local language trainings they offer to researchers and Indonesianists around the world who have done, are doing, and will be conducting research in the archipelago.

Please register for the "Panel Bahasa" at this link.

20th Northeast Conference on Indonesia: "Public Health and Well-Being in Indonesia: COVID-19 and Beyond"

Saturday, October 24, 2020 at 9:00am EDT

In cooperation with the Yale Indonesia Forum, the Cornell Indonesian Association will be hosting the 20th Northeast Conference on Indonesia on October 24, 2020 (Saturday) on the theme "Public Health and Well-Being in Indonesia: COVID-19 and Beyond." The keynote address, delivered by Siddharth Chandra from Michigan State University, will be held at 11am. This conference will be held as a part of the Southeast Asia Program's 70th Anniversary, a year-long celebration of SEAP.

Read more about the schedule and the speakers here, and please register for the conference. You may direct any questions to We look forward to stimulating conversations about public health in Indonesia this Saturday!

COVID-19 and the responses to contain it have brought into sharp relief several health-related issues in Indonesia that encompass social, political, and economic concerns. The pandemic has highlighted, among other concerns, a reliance on foreign medical supplies, strained government resources, and a lack of healthcare providers in parts of the archipelago, prompting the Indonesian government to announce new efforts to bolster health security and stave off further economic decline. In response to this contemporary moment, the 20th Northeastern Conference on Indonesia, hosted by the Cornell Indonesian Association in cooperation with the Yale Indonesia Forum, will focus broadly on the state of health in Indonesia, whether in the past or in the present. 

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