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Jakarta Post

No western thing: FemFest 2019 traces Indonesia's feminism movement amid online criticism

  • Ardila Syakriah

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Sun, November 24, 2019   /  01:18 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Safe space: Speakers and attendees of FemFest 2019 discuss the importance of feminism in education in Jakarta on Nov. 23. The festival aims to introduce feminism to the country's younger generation. (The Jakarta Post/JP/Ardila Syakriah)

    Amid online criticism, the second Feminist Festival (FemFest 2019) has taken place peacefully, highlighting the history of the country’s feminism movement.  FemFest 2019 was held at Wisma PKBI in Kebayoran Baru, South Jakarta, on Nov. 23-24.  This year’s FemFest adopted the theme “Made in Indonesia Feminism” in a bid to localize feminism, which many in the country consider a western principle and thus not in line with Indonesian values. Earlier this year, for instance, online campaigns launched by antifeminist group Indonesia without Feminists sparked debate on social media. The group framed the movement as, among others, a blasphemous western idea that was antithetical to Islamic values. Such notion was misleading considering the country’s feminist movement had dated back to the Dutch colonization era in the 18...