Sunday, February 3, 2013

Discourse on the search for a renewed identity of Muhammadiyah for its post-centennial era

Anthropology Today, Vol. 29 No 1, February  2013: 27-28.
Claire-Marie Hefner
Emory University,

International Research Conference on Muhammadiyah (IRCM)
Universitas Muhammadiyah Malang
29 November - 2 December 2012

In an era when ethno-religious violence and terrorism have captured the headlines with regard to Islam in Indonesia, it is useful to remember that this Southeast Asian country is home to the largest Muslim social welfare and educational organization in the world. Founded in 1912 by Kyai Hajji Ahmad Dahlan, the modernist-reformist Muhammadiyah celebrated its 100-year anniversary this November. In conjunction with various centennial celebrations across the archipelago, the organization sponsored the first IRCM (International Research Conference on Muhammadiyah) entitled ‘Discourse on the search for a renewed identity of Muhammadiyah for its post-centennial era’. The conference was held at the vast Universitas Muhammadiyah Malang campus in East Java from 29 November - 2 December 2012. The event was designed as a forum for reflecting on the historical, social, cultural, and political contributions of this influential organization and for considering both the future challenges the Muhammadiyah faces and directions it might take. The overarching question of how the Muhammadiyah will formulate its ‘renewed identity’ was addressed through discussions in eight themed panels: Muhammadiyah’s history, philanthropy, education, politics, reform, gender, youth and radicalism, and finally, Muhammadiyah studies.

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