Wednesday Rojak #11

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It’s an eclectic mix of culture and archaeology in this week’s edition of Wednesday Rojak. Here’s some of the post from the blogosphere that caught my eye during the past week:

  • The Washington Post has some tips on visiting Cambodia’s Angkor on a budget by visiting during the rainy season in When it Rains, You Score.
  • Read a traditional Cambodian folk tale, Lord Keo and the Cow God.
  • New Mandala features an interview with Cambodia scholar, Emeritus Professor David Chandler.
  • Read about the oldest mosque in Indonesia, the Ampel Mosque in East Java…
  • while in West Java, we read about the Penetaran Temple, which dates back to Majapahit times.
  • And finally, in an off-tangent note, features a first-hand account of Anthropologists in the Military.

In this series of weekly rojaks (published on Wednesdays) I’ll feature other sites in the blogosphere that are of related to archaeology in Southeast Asia. Got a recommendation for the next Wednesday rojak? Email me!

German archaeologist studies Panji stories

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07 September 2007 (Jakarta Post) – A story reporting on a German archaeologist’s work on studying the Panji stories depicted on Javanese temples. I am personally unfamiliar with the Panji stories myself, but they seem to be indigenous to Java and seem to have spread to the Malay-speaking world. Set in Java, the Panji stories tell of Raden Inu, the king of Kuripan is betrothed to the daughter of the King of Daha. The princess disappears, and Raden Inu goes in search of his betrothed disguised as Panji, the titular character. Like the Ramayana, the Panji stories have been expressed in a number of literary and theatrical forms, although limited in transmission to the Malay-speaking world. The stories are an interesting source of information for archaeologists because they provide a peek into courtly and daily life in pre-Islamic Java; indeed the kingdoms of Kuripan and Daha (also known as Kediri) historically existed in the 12th century.

German studies ‘Panji’ stories

Lydia Kleven, an archaeologist from Koln University, Germany, said Tuesday at a seminar in Surabaya she was doing her thesis on the Panji stories of East Java.

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Angkor Blog


Keeping with the Angkor theme for this past few days, here’s a website I found about the art and architecture of Angkor, the Angkor Blog.

The Angkor Blog

The name is really a misnomer – it’s not really a blog, but rather a well-indexed information site. Sidestepping the usual touristy information about Angkor Wat and how to get around Siem Reap, this site focuses mainly on the temples, the iconography and the mythology that is depicted on the bas-reliefs and scultpure of Angkor. Plenty of pictures and videos so that you know what is being talked about, as well as links to primary texts like the Mahabharata and the Ramayana to explain the various events depicted in art.

That’s it for the series of features on Angkor! If all goes well, I should be returning home today and archaeological news updates will resume tomorrow.