This chapter explores the larger history of sexuality and gender in Indonesia since the first appearance of lesbi in the national news in 1981, through the work of Saskia Wieringa, who studied a working class butch/femme community in Jakarta. These studies include Sharyn Graham Davie's powerful analysis of calalai in South Sulawesi, based on research conducted primarily in 1999 and 2000; this chapter works on tomboi in West Sumatra, conducted in 2001 and 2004; and Tracy Wright-Webster's wonderful undergraduate thesis on butchi in Yogyakarta, Java, in 2003-2004. In 1983, the first formal lesbian organisation was created in Jakarta. Her subsequent longitudinal study of a working-class butch/femme community in Jakarta provides solid historical depth to the story of lesbians in Indonesia. A close look at each of these studies reveals different understandings of what it means to be masculine and female, This chapter focuses on the similarities among them as it reworks the meaning of lesbian in Indonesia in the 2000s.
|Title of host publication
|Sex and Sexualities in Contemporary Indonesia: Sexual politics, health, diversity and representations
|Linda Rae Bennett and Sharyn Graham Davies
|Place of Publication
|Abingdon and New York
|Published - 2015