|Modern Asian Studies (2007), 41:6:1295-1329 Cambridge University Press|
Copyright © 2007 Cambridge University Press
Rituals of Rule in the Administered Community: The Javanese Slametan Reconsidered
Ethnographic work in an urban kampung in central Java reveals this community form to be both an administrative rationality and a set of locally meaningful social relations. The continued restatement of the relevance of community through the Javanese ritual meal known as the slametan and women's roles in these rituals of commensality are the focus of this consideration. State sponsorship of housewives as community welfare workers extends the long arch of kampung community formation as the ground for the dispersion of rituals of rule into the lives of Indonesian citizens as well as working-class recuperation through rituals of community. State formation conceived as process draws attention to everyday kampung culture as the matrix for reproduction of both rule and working class neighbourhoods, and provides a perspective on the state that is resolutely low, attuned to both the realities of institutional structure and the repertoires and routines of everyday practise.