Waruno Mahdi

Commemoration in The Hague of the 120th anniversary of
the arrival of the first Javanese contract laborers in Suriname
(Sunday, August 8, 2010)

During a short stay in the Netherlands this summer I had the opportunity to be at the commemoration of the 120th anniversary of the first transport of Javanese contract laborers to Suriname, that arrived in Paramaribo on August 9, 1890. Some of their descendants have meanwhile emigrated to the Netherlands, others returned to Indonesia, to partly moved back to Suriname again, or to the Netherlands. Some descendants moved to neighboring French Guiana, others now live in the US. 
There was a culture manifestation in the atrium of the Hague University (Haagse Hogeschool) on Sunday, August 8, 2010, jointly organized by a commemoration committee (STICHJI) and the Royal Institute of Anthropology (KITLV), Leiden, supported by the Suriname-Javanese organization Rukun Budi Utama, and in cooperation with the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI). 
Here are some photographs I managed to make, actually far too few to do justice to the very well organized, rich and many-sided culture event.

Reception desk at the entrance
Photo exhibition of the photographer Matte Soemopawiro
Javanese traditional martial arts pencha’ silat performance

Performance of traditional Javanese ballet
A short pause
Video show of interviews with elder Suriname Javanese telling their life experiences

Food counter with absolutely delicious
Javanese dishes
Queuing for a meal
  A special publication was issued on the topic: 
  Yvette Kopijn & Harriëtte Mingoen,
  Stille passanten: Levensverhalen van Javaans-
  Surinaamse ouderen in Nederland
  Amsterdam: KIT Publishers (2008)

Some Suriname-Javanese links:
BanyuMili: in Suriname · Rukun Budi Utama: in The Hague · Bangsa Jawa: in Amsterdam · Javanen van Suriname – Vertellingen · facebook: Javanese in Suriname · facebook: Javanese from Suriname living in the Netherlands · Eating in Suriname: Javanese · M.A. Amatali: “Traditional Javanese music in Suriname” · Pop music 
History and other information links:
Rosemarijn Hoefte, “The Javanese in Suriname”, Inside indonesia 92 (2008)
Craig A. Lockard, “Repatriation Movements among the Javanese in Surinam: A Comparative Analysis”, Caribbean Studies 18 pp. 85-113 (1978)
Scribe: Javanese traditions in Suriname
Wikipedia-DE · Wikipedia-ID · Wikipedia-NL