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Indirect Recognition. Frontiers and Territorialization around Mount Halimun-Salak National Park, Indonesia


  • Lund, Christian
  • Rachman, Noer Fauzi


Government institutions and local people in Indonesia have entrenched, resurrected, and reinvented space through their different territorial and property claims. From colonial times, onward, government institutions have dissolved local political orders and territorialized and reordered spatial frontiers. Local resource users, on the other hand, have aligned with, or undermined, the spatial ordering. We analyze government-citizen encounters in West Java and the dynamics of recognition in the fields of government territorialization, taxation, local organization, and identity politics. Spatial categories are struggled over, and groups of actors seek to legitimate their presence, their activities, and their resource use by occupation, mapping, and construction of “public” infrastructure. In the case of conservation in the Mount Halimun-Salak National Park, we find that rather than one overarching recognition of a single direct spatial claim to property, a web of direct and indirect claims for recognition emerges between and among claimants and institutions. If direct claims to resources are impossible to pursue, people lodge indirect claims. In everyday situations, indirect recognition can perform important legal and political work. After the authoritarian New Order regime, in particular, claims to citizenship worked as indirect property claims, and indirect recognition of such claims are important because they serve as pragmatic proxies for formal property rights. Two case studies examine how people struggle over the past, negotiating the constraints of social propriety for legitimation and indirect recognition of their claims.

Suggested Citation

  • Lund, Christian & Rachman, Noer Fauzi, 2018. "Indirect Recognition. Frontiers and Territorialization around Mount Halimun-Salak National Park, Indonesia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 417-428.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:101:y:2018:i:c:p:417-428
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2017.04.003

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