The making of public Islam: piety, agency, and commodification on the landscape of the Indonesian public sphere
by Hasan, Noorhaidi
Over the last three decades, Islam has demonstrated its vitality as a system of symbolic and collective identity that informs the social and political dynamics of Indonesian society. It has increasingly served as the most important frame of reference for many Indonesians to reflect upon the socio-political and cultural system they imagined capable of bringing about justice and attaining veritable development. Keeping pace with the growing influence of Islam among the emerging Indonesian Muslim middle class, it has even gradually emerged as a symbol of elitism, associated with the road to success. Its strength lies in the fact that it has developed into some sort of network that enables large numbers of people from different social backgrounds to share and make contacts, both real and virtual. Through this network, the Islamic revival messages have resonated loudly, influencing multiple social and political fields. The network, in turn, provides credible paths for upward mobility and also a market for commercial products.