Population Movement in Wet Rice Communities: A Case Study of Two Dukuh in Yogyakarta Special Region

Mantra, Ida Bagoes
Chapman, Murray
Geography and Environment
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [August 1978]
Starting Page
Ending Page
Alternative Title
Very little is known about the pattern and process of population mobility in Central Java or in other parts of Indonesia. Most previous studies have focused on moves that are permanent and ignored those that are impermanent. As a result, it has been concluded that the Javanese are a highly immobile people. This study is exploratory. It aims to identify the complex of population movement in two wet rice communities in Yogyakarta Special Region. The basic proposition is that economic and social factors, in combination, explain movement away from the village as well as return to it. Two dukuh (hamlet) were chosen for detailed study: Kadirojo (de jure population 345 in 1975), Sleman Regency; and Piring (de jure population 393 in 1975), Bantul Regency. For each dukuh, the basic field data were obtained from monitoring over eight months the mobility of all de jure residents aged 15-54 years (19 May 1975-31 January 1976). Additional information was gathered from a hamlet census, retrospective movement histories, in-depth interviews, and case studies of movers. Secondary data also were utilized. There are three kinds of population movement in dukuh Kadirojo and Piring: commuting, circulation, and migration. Commuting (nglaju) is a movement across the dukuh boundary for at least six and no more than 24 hours; in circulation (nginep or mondok), the dukuh boundary is crossed for at least one day but less than one year; and migration (pindah) is an intentional shift of residence across the dukuh boundary for one or more years. During eight months, a great number of moves were made by adult villagers: commuting 7,405 (Kadirojo) and 8,575 (Piring); circulation 846 (Kadirojo) and 523 (Piring); migration 23 (Kadirojo) and 24 (Piring). The dominantly circular structure of this mobility reflects the strong ties to one's dukuh community. Even villagers who have migrated to another locality still regard their birthplace as home and maintain close contact with relatives and friends. This demonstrates the enduring kinship ties among dukuh people and the bi-local orientation of even the migrants. There are two sets of forces that lead people to migrate from or remain within the dukuh: centrifugal and centripetal. Too little rice land, barely sufficient food for an adequate diet, lack of local employment opportunities, and distance from advanced education tend to draw away the economically active. Factors that encourage people to remain are the tight ties to birth place, family and kin, ownership or access to dukuh land, a basic commitment to mutual self-help and accompanying ritual, and the existence of patron/client relationships to assist the poorest households. In addition, there is little information about distant places, transport and living costs outside the dukuh are high, and reports from resettlements beyond Java often are negative. In Kadirojo and Piring, the contradictions between these centrifugal and centripetal forces are resolved by commuting and circulation, which represent a compromise between total immobility and permanent relocation. A dramatic increase since the seventies in the volume and distance of commuting and circulation reflects the extension of rural roads and the growth of the mini-bus. Rising levels of formal education and the adoption of agricultural innovations also have increased the number of individuals who aspire to spend longer periods in towns and cities. Despite these changes, the mobility of dukuh people remains a bi-local system, tightly anchored to the home village and various destinations. This suggests that the relationship between socioeconomic change and types of movement is complex and does not, in Java, necessarily follow the pattern characteristic of Western countries.
PhD University of Hawaii at Manoa 1978
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 335–344).
internal migration, Indonesia, Yogyakarta (Daerah Istimewa), Yogyakarta population, Yogyakarta economic conditions, agricultural laborers, rice workers, rural population
xix, 344 leaves : illustrations, maps
Geographic Location
Time Period
Related To
Theses for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (University of Hawaii at Manoa). Geography.
Table of Contents
All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Rights Holder
Local Contexts
Email libraryada-l@lists.hawaii.edu if you need this content in ADA-compliant format.