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Leadership, social order, and democracy: The novels of a 'secular modernizing intellectual'

Hill, D.T. (1996) Leadership, social order, and democracy: The novels of a 'secular modernizing intellectual'. Indonesia Circle, 24 (69). pp. 102-121.

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In an influential 1973 essay American political scientist R. William Liddle assessed the achievements of a 'group of power seekers, active in Indonesian politics since 1965, who have attempted to articulate and to act upon an ideology (although they would not call it that) of modernization' (Liddle, 1973:178). He dubbed his subjects 'secular modernizing intellectuals'. Their characteristics included a commitment to imposing their particular conception of 'modernization' upon policy-makers, 'their articulateness, their command of elite newspapers, and their self-proclaimed role as conscience of the regime', and their 'inability to unite organizationally'. But Liddle saw their primary characteristics as the 'intensity of their activities both in ideological formulation and dissemination and . . . their willingness to act upon their beliefs'. It is this ideology and its intellectual antecedents which primarily occupied Liddle, who argued that though 'their views have dominated public political discussion since 1967 ... their influence- in the sense of success in achieving their objectives - has been minimal'.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Arts
Publisher: Routledge
Copyright: The Author
Publisher's Website:
Notes: Published by Oxford University Press for the School of Oriental and African Studies.
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