chapter  4
19 Pages

Applying the seas perspective in the study of eastern Indonesia in the early modern period


This chapter argues that the goal of Christianization was undertaken in the belief that teachings and practices as they had evolved in Europe could be successfully transported to very different environments. In early modern period Southeast Asia the difficulty of amalgamating 'global' and 'local' is well known in the Catholic context, especially in regard to Vietnamese ancestor veneration, but in the Indonesian archipelago Protestant attitudes were even more implacable. The argument addresses glocalization in Southeast Asia by first drawing on the contemporary concept of the 'alpha' city, used in urban studies in reference to places like New York, London, Paris, and Tokyo that are considered nodes in the global economic system and as purveyors of international culture. From the beginning of the sixteenth century, as the spread of Christianity became enmeshed in the European goal of commercial profit, religious networks in Southeast Asia were reshaped. Christianity is still regarded as a foreign religion.