Universitas Indonesia Conferences, The 8th International Symposium of Journal Antropologi Indonesia

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Future History for Papuan Conflict Resolution
Susanto Zuhdi

Last modified: 2022-06-06


One of the main problems in the settlement of Papuan conflict is when history gives unfairimplication. The history of Papua—a former Dutch colony that was once disputed, regarding itsstatus as a part of the newly independent nation, after the results of the 1949 Round TableConference— has been considered as evading the interest of the Papuans, after the territory wasclaimed belonged to Indonesia in 1963. Memoria passionis for most Papuans should not bereduced if current history is meant to deliver justice for all. Therefore, future history could bepresented as the capital in resolving the Papuan problems. Future history should not be seen ascontradictio in terminis, because history as a past occurrence could repeat itself in the present.The past is used as a critically-reflective material, aiming for not repeating the ‘tableau ofstupidity’ as Voltaire said about history. Theoretically, the human future could be redesigned,starting from discovering the lessons of the past so that the future could manifest better. In theprocess of resolving the Papuan problem, there has to be a mutual honesty in the framework ofinterpreting the past. This paper uses the collective memory approach by examining archivesthat can help create ‘a share of identity’ for both Papua and Indonesia. Collective memory isbased on the archives. As a record of events in the past in various forms of media, archivesignite memories that contribute to the evolution of ‘a sense of identity’. Through a collectivememory, which is aligned for the future of Papua, redefinition becomes a necessity. Collectivememory is “a contingent process one that is rooted in the present”. Hence, collective memorycould be arranged upon, while in this context, history is interpreted as a strategy to build thefuture.

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