Barometer of modernity: village performances in the highlands of West Sumatra

Paul H. Mason

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Silek Minang is a local genre of West Sumatran martial arts that is nationally recognised in Indonesia as Pencak Silat. Music is absent in Silek Minang training but accompanies public performances to create a multimodal sensory experience that taps deeply into sentiments of cultural heritage. These holistic representations of tradition serve to maintain a regional sense of identity in the midst of growing nationalist and global influences. With a consideration of modernity, globalisation, and changing modes of cultural transmission, this article discusses a selection of performance genres including Silek Minang during a religious festival in the hinterland of West Sumatra.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-90
Number of pages12
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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