The Place and Dynamics of Drinking Culture in Indonesia during the ‘Era Reformasi’

The position of alcoholic beverages in Indonesian culture and society is often seen in two different perspectives. One side considers the drink was rooted in ethnic traditions in several groups, providing cultural identity, became part of the ritual and consumed in a regular basis. Therefore, its presence in the community is real: appears in the daily interaction, ceremonial and cultural symbols. On the other hand, some consider it as a trigger to crimes, conflict and other social tensions; impairing the health, and is forbidden in terms of religious view. The government’s policy about alcohol has been more emphasis on the aspects of distribution, although it is also reaching out production and consumption dimensions.

In the ‘era reformasi’, when the struggle to express self and ethnic identity strengthened, alcoholic beverages are in an interesting situation. Ethnic sentiments arose, elements of tradition became importantly considered and traditionally produced beverages perceived as cultural assets. Moreover from an economic standpoint, production and distribution of alcoholic beverages also importantly contributed for domestic life. But in the same time, religious aspirations -especially Islam, is also on the rise and become the main opposition for the presence of the drink in the daily life. A number of proposed legislation to restrict and even prohibit them is occurring in both national and local levels. This panel will expose and discuss the tradition and practice of consuming alcoholic beverages in Indonesia as well as to discuss the technical aspects of production, their contribution to the domestic economy, their place in ‘adat’ or custom, the dynamics of ‘modern’ and ‘traditional’ beverages consumption, regulation and restriction of the drink, and other socio-cultural aspects associated with them.

Panel coordinator:

Semiarto Aji Purwanto (Universitas Indonesia)
Dendy A. Borman (GIMMI)
Raymond Michael Menot (Universitas Indonesia)


  1. Learning to drink: An exploration of how alcohol beverages are consumed in three Indonesian provinces [Semiarto Aji Purwanto]
  2. Perilaku Minum Beralkohol, Penegakan Hukum & Cultural Criminology: Studi Awal Di Kota Abepura & Sekitar [A. Josias Simon R.]
  3. The Fabrication of Local Identity: Marginalization fo the Indigenous Dayakenese Local Beverage in Central Kalimantan [Sofyan Ansori]
  4. The Violence Cocktails: The Relations on Cultural Expression, Alcohol Drinking Practice and Violence in Solo and Yogyakarta after Reformation Era [Irfan Nugraha]
  5. Drinking Alcohol = Crime? [Raymond Michael Menot]
  6. Fermentasi Dalam Kuliner Tradisional Indonesia [Harry Hardianto Nazarudin]