LECTURE SERIES: Indonesia in all aspects

In addition to the two exhibitions, there will be four lectures in which experts will speak about their respective field of study, always in the context of Indonesia. The lectures are widely accessible to an interested audience.

Guest lecturers

The following guest speakers are confirmed:

Thursday 12th October 2017

Prof. Dr. Ir. Stefaan De Neve – Department of Soil Management Universiteit Gent

Professor Stefaan De Neve tells abouut his research in Indonesia, which focusses on agriculture, biological and organic crops, etc.

Johan Vandorpe – Program Advisor sustainable chain development Vredeseilanden

Organic Fair Trade rice from Indonesia / Java

In Java, in Indonesia, organic Fair Trade rice is being produced. This Sunria rice shows that rice production can provide a very good athmosphere for humans, the environment and the economy. The organic Sunria rice is available in many bio-shops and -supermarkets in Belgium. The whole project had the goal of bringing more organic rice cultivation to Java. At the same time, the farmers’ families have to be able to earn a liveable income with their rice cultivation and trade. Biofresh, a major Belgian distributor of biological foodstuffs, established a cooperation between farmers, retailers, consumers and the local government. The Flemish NGO Vredeseilanden was also closely involved in making this project a success. The farmers are not only cultivating the rice, but also the processing and packaging takes place in the villages.

“The approach to cultivating this rice produces revolutionary results, and this without the use of chemistry or cutting-edge technology.”

“The farmers had been stuck in a vicious circle of poverty for decades when we intoduced the standards of Fair Trade and encouraged more sustainable cultivation. The farmers now are able to save 50% on water usage, they eject less greenhouse gasses and strengthen the biodiversity and fertility of their country. The crop revenue has risen 78%! For the consumer, Sunria rice is not only cultivated form a fertile soil and not chemically treated, it is also a great choice to help the environment and local farmers.”

Thursday 19th October 2017

Jeroen Vincken – Commercial Manager Joker Tourism

Traveling to Indonesia: everybody has heard of the paradise islands of Java and Bali, but Indonesia has so much more to offer!

Come to this evening of travel presentations to get ideas of distant dream trips to Southeast Asia.








Thursday 2nd November 2017

Prof. Dr. Jeroen Adam – Department of Conflict and Development Studies Universiteit Gent

Jeroen Adam discusses the proliferation of culture / adat in the Indonesia of after the New Order. In doing so, he weighs the potentially inclusive and exclusive character of adat in a process of democratization.

Paul Catteeuw – Em. lecturer Intercultural Communication & researcher Intangible Cultural Heritage Karel de Grote Hogeschool

Missionary work and Unesco: Toraja’s funeral rites

The funeral rites of the Toraja (Sulawesi – Indonesia) are very special and unique. An application to put the funeral sites on the Unesco list of World Heritage was not honored because the practices would allegedly have changed too drastically since the missionary work that started in 1913. But is that correct? Hasn’t the material aspect been mixed with the intagible? And didn’t these practices continue to exist just because of the presence of Christian missionaries? In- and acculturation have clearly played a large part here. Practices are after all dynamic. Maybe a new application for Unesco might be in place.

Thursday 9th November 2017

Marita de Sterck – Anthropologist and youth author

Wreed schoon, volkssprookjes op reis. (Traveling folk tales)

Popular folk tales are travelers. They connect generations and cultures and invite to explore each other. In “Wreed schoon” (published by Polis), anthropologist Marita de Sterck collected a varied group of non-infantile folk tales from 40 cultures inhabiting Belgium and the Netherlands. Jonas Thys converted the uncensored texts into confrontational images. During her lecture, the author will zoom in on the linking power of folk tales, and she will introduce the public to Cinderella’s from all continents, ghouls, devils and witches, smart brave women, love and lust in all shades. She will also talk about two specially selected folk stories from Indonesia.

Prof. Dr. Eva De Clercq – Department of Languages and Cultures – India University of Ghent

Ramayana and Mahabharata in Indonesia

The Ramayana and the Mahabharata are considered as the Indian counterpart of the classic Greek epos. The Ramayana tells the story of a prince, Rama, whose beloved Sita is abducted by a demon king, Ravana. The Mahabharata is about the bloody battle between two clans within the same family. The oldest versions of these stories were composed in Sanskrit centuries before our era. Throughout history, however, these stories continued to appeal to the imagination of the people, even far beyond the Indian subcontinent. Artists integrated episodes into their works of art, poets created their own adaptations in various Asian languages. In Indonesia too, we find stories in the extensive literature, in the visual and performing arts. During her lecture, professor De Clercq will provide an overview of the most important adaptations and their details.


The lectures are held on Thursday evenings in the cultural center in the Zebrastraat.

For whom
Students and Staff, but also Ghentians and an interested audience
Each Thursday evening at 20:00, starting 12th October until 9th November 2017
Cultural Center Zebrastraat, Zebrastraat 32, 9000 Ghent