YOGYAKARTA - The concept and view of Javanese culture that developed in the present are more viewed stereotypically and particularly related to the reign of kingdoms of Java when they were under the colonial rule. In fact, the age was generally considered as a bleak period for the traditional royal system of government as it has no autonomy in important aspects of civic life. The condition was very different from pre-colonial and post-colonial period of Java, both in economic and political fields.
This was conveyed by the author of a book Peradaban Jawa, dari Mataram Kuno sampai Majapahit Akhir (Javanese Civilization, from Ancient Mataram to the Last Majapahit Kingdom), Dr. Supratikno Rahardjo, in a discussion and book launching at Faculty of Cultural Sciences UGM, Saturday (28/5). Supratikno said that the culture and Java Kingdom before the colonial era did not forget the maritime power in state administration.
The aspects showed that the maritime importance does not only grow in the kingdoms of Demak and Majapahit, but even in the ancient kingdom, namely the Ancient Mataram which is known as an ideal model of an agricultural empire. "In Ancient Mataram and Majapahit period, political institutions demonstrated the development that was revolutionary from the simplest to most complex one. Meanwhile, in the development of economic institutions, the civilization of ancient Java showed continuity, even experienced declining periods," the faculty of Archaeology, University of Indonesia said.
The dynamics of ancient Javanese civilization during the 8th up to the 15th centuries described a phenomenon of a local society order that had become part of the global order. Javanese civilization at that time grew in the shadow of two great centers of civilization in Asia, namely India in the period of Pala dynasty up to Wijayanagara and China from the Tang dynasty to the Ming. "The phenomenon of globalization of old and present eras is not really different from its essence, namely the desire to be recognized as a nation by other nations worldwide by adopting the dominant values of that era," he added.