YAD Hosts Dramatic Readings of Babad Diponegoro

YAD Hosts Dramatic Readings of Babad Diponegoro

For this edition, we would like to present to Wadah Newsletter readers the following YAD activities: the first, relating to the cultural preservation of the Autobiographical Chronicle of Prince Diponegoro 1785-1855 (Babad Diponegoro); the second, the 2014 Kalpataru Award conferred on YAD Chairperson Hashim Djojohadikusumo in recognition of his work to support and preserve the environment, and last, a social activity in cooperation with WADAH Foundation, the inauguration of Klinik Bunga Arsari (health support facility for village communities).

 Pangeran Diponegoro (Prince Diponegoro)

 Pangeran Diponegoro Source: 1847. H.M Lange. Gedenkschrift van de oorlog op Java

Pangeran Diponegoro
Source: 1847. H.M Lange. Gedenkschrift van de oorlog op Java

Pangeran Diponegoro, also known as Dipanegara, was born Raden Mas Ontowiryo in Yogyakarta, Central Java, on November 11, 1785, the eldest son of Sultan Hamengkubowono III, the King of Mataram Kingdom. When Hamengkubowono III died in 1814, Diponegoro was passed over to succeed the throne in favor of the King’s younger half-brother, Hamengkubuwono IV, a maneuver supported by the Dutch colonial rulers. When Hamengkubuwono IV died, he was survived by his wife and only son Hamengkubuwono V who was still an infant then, making the infant his heir. Prince Diponegoro was again passed over although he had been promised the throne by his uncle. the Dutch known as the Java War in 1825-1830. The Dutch in Java sustained heavy losses during this war. Negotiation however, and exiled to Manado, Sulawesi Island, then removed to Makassar where he died on January 8, 1855. Diponegoro is not just sImply a Javanese Prince, he is regarded as the country’s National Hero.

UNESCO Memory of the World register

During his exile in Manado, Diponegoro wrote an autobiographical chronicle known as Babad Diponegoro. It is an eloquent and supremely important script of 1,151 pages written over a period of nine months (May 1831-February 1832). Cultural Organization (UNESCO) endorsed 300 scripts from all over the world, including Babad Diponegoro or Autobiographical Chronicle of Prince Diponegoro (1785-1855), to the Memory of the World Register. Its inclusion was made possible by the recommendation of The Indonesia National Library and the Koninklijk Instituut voor Taal-Land-en Volkenkunde (KITLV) or Royal Institute of Linguistics, State and Anthropology of the Netherlands, in 2012. For our part,

UNESCO declared the chronicle to Indonesian modern history. This is also Javanese literature which shows extraordinary sensitivity towards local conditions and experiences. Babad Diponegoro is now internationally recognized.

Newsletter July 2014 - for web_5
The dramatic readings, which consisted of four narrations, were jointly organized by YAD, Bentara Budaya Jakarta, Bakti Budaya Djarum Foundation and Jakarta Publisher Kepustakaan Populer Gramedia (KPG).

Landung Simatupang, a renowned Indonesian actor, led a series of dramatic readings of the Babad Diponegoro to celebrate the inclusion of the chronicle in the Memory of the World Register. This was supported by Prof. Carey, who authored an invaluable reference on Diponegoro entitled “The Power of Prophecy, Prince Dipanegara and The End of an Old Order in Java, 1785-1855,” or in Indonesian, “Kuasa Ramalan, Pangeran Diponegoro dan Akhir Tatanan Lama di Jawa 1785-1855,” published by YAD in 2012. On March 6 of this year, Prof. Carey launched another book “Takdir,” a shorter version of the previous publication on Pangeran Diponegoro where parts of Landung’s narration of Diponegoro were based.

Newsletter July 2014 - for web_5
YAD supported research for Diponegoro data traces in the Netherlands by Prof. Peter Carey, British historian and Prof. Dr. Wardiman Djojonegoro, former Indonesian minister of education and culture.

The first was held on November 24th, 2013, at theformer Dutch residence in Magelang where Diponegoro was trapped and arrested. The second performance was on January 4, 2014, at the Sasana Wiratama Museum, Tegalrejo, Yogyakarta, which commemorates Diponegoro’s life with his grandmother Ratu Ageng and his to escape to Selarong Cave. The third was held on May 10, 2014, at the Fatahilah Museum Jakarta, the jail where Diponegoro was held captive before he was sent to Sulawesi. The fourth and last of the series was held on June 5, 2014, at Fort Rotterdam, Makassar, where he was exiled until his death on January 8, 1855.

Through the conduct of such activities and promotions sponsored and supported by YAD, it is hoped that the collective memory of the Indonesians would be awakened, and a deeper appreciation of the nation’s history and cultural heritage be instilled. The importance of preserving such heritage needs to be impressed upon the minds of the people, especially the generations to come.