Indonesia is a string of islands stretching from the Indian to the Pacific Ocean. Indonesia has a wide variety of ethnic groups which include Javanese, Sundanese, Madurese, and others. These groups are different in the way they look, their religious beliefs, the clothes they wear, their styles of houses and boats, their methods of agriculture, what they eat, and how they organize their society. They speak different languages, too but most know Bahasa Indonesia, the language that unites the nation. Indonesia has been independent for just over half a century. In this short time the country has had to adjust to the demands of the modern world.
Indonesian culture has been shaped by long interaction between original indigenous customs and multiple foreign influences. Indonesia is central along many trading routes between the Far East and the Middle East, resulting in many cultural practices being strongly influenced by a multitude of religions, including, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism and Islam (Lesmana, T. 1997, August 15). Examples of cultural fusion include the fusion of Islam with Hindu in Javanese Abangan belief, the fusion of Hinduism, Buddhism, and the fusion of Hinduism in Kaharingan (Lesmana, T. 1997, August 15). Even though, Indonesia is influenced by different foreign cultures, they are still practicing their ethnic rituals, customs, and wearing their traditional clothing.
Race and Ethnicity
Race is usually referred as the concept of dividing humans into populations or groups on the basis of various characteristics. These characteristics include skin color, facial features, and hair texture. Conceptions of race, as well as specific ways of grouping races, vary by their culture and are often controversial for social and political reasons. An ethnic identity is further marked by the recognition from others by their common culture, linguistic, religion,...