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Jakarta Post

Empowerment or privilege? Minister Bintang's challenge

  • Yogi Paramitha Dewi

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PREMIUM
Yogyakarta   /   Sat, November 2, 2019   /  09:33 am
Empowerment or privilege? Minister Bintang's challenge Women's Empowerment and Child Protection Minister I Gusti Ayu Bintang Darmawati, better known as Bintang Puspayoga, greets the press during the announcement of the Indonesia Onward Cabinet in Jakarta on Wednesday. (JP/Seto Wardhana)

I Gusti Ayu Bintang Darmawati has joined President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s new Cabinet. Known primarily as the wife of a former cooperatives minister, she will face many challenges as the new women’s empowerment and child protection minister. Her Balinese background illustrates, in part, the challenges many Indonesian women face in custom-bound communities. Balinese society is deeply influenced by patriarchy, marginalizing women in family and community affairs. Traditionally, women are not involved in decision-making nor entitled to an inheritance, and they are vulnerable in cases of marriage and divorce. Contemporary Balinese women have a threefold burden. First, they bear the responsibility for reproduction. Second, as tourism has forced up living costs, many women must seek extra income for their families. Finally, Balinese women must maintain cosmic harmo...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.