Leiden and Indonesia are very much connected. Leiden University has a long tradition in doing research in Indonesia, and in educating Indonesian students. Many locations in Leiden signify this connections with Indonesia: museums, research institutes, and even houses where famous scholars or well-known Indonesian students once lived. Instead of pointing out these locations (that is done before), we invite you to walk through Leiden while imagining Indonesia. As countless Indonesian students have done while walking the busy shopping streets, we invite you to experiment with mixing what you see in Leiden with images of Indonesia. In the framework of the Leiden Asia Year KITLV (Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies) developed the walking-app ‘Envisioning Indonesia’. In two walks of ‘Envisioning Indonesia’, several places lend you ‘binoculars’ to look beyond your present here and imagine Indonesia by connecting the places you visit with the locations in Indonesia. The Leidse Burcht, a student houses, a former factory and the Museum Volkenkundede are for example connected with a fortress on the Moluccan Island of Ternate, an Islamic student association, an ice factory and the Museum Kapuas Raya in Sintang (Kalimantan). In that way, walking through Leiden becomes a global experience.
Background: Leiden is an important center of knowledge for Indonesianists because Leiden University Library hosts the largest scientific collections on Indonesia. Another advantage is that Leiden is home to KITLV, the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies, which runs projects like Recording the Future (RtF) a project in which since 2003 daily life in 8 locations in Indonesia is filmed every 4 years. The video’s from this archive are used to connect the walker with Indonesia.
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