in Stefan Partelow / Maria Hadjimichael / Anna-Katharina Hornidge (eds.), Ocean governance knowledge: systems, policy foundations and thematic analyses, Cham: Springer Nature, 337-363
Archipelagic identities have long patterned Indonesian historic imaginaries, collective memory, and its postcolonial modernist narratives on nation-building. This chapter examines and puts into conversation two distinct and interrelated concepts undergirding archipelagic thinking – ‘Nusantara’ and the lesser studied ‘Tanah Air’ – against speculative visions of Indonesia’s developmental trajectories. These concepts intersect with Indonesia’s aspirational vision as a maritime nation that is to take its place within a regional and globalist paradigm of ocean-centric economic growth. Inspired by critical ocean studies and by drawing on narrative analysis, we begin by considering the paradoxes within Indonesia’s contemporary blue economy growth visions in relation to its older land-based biases in planning and nation-building. In critically engaging with Indonesia’s own oceanic turn towards a blue growth orthodoxy, we consider three aspects of its futuring trajectory, namely industrialization, infrastructural development, and its recent choice of relocating its administrative capital to east Kalimantan. While engaging with paradigmatic land-locked biases and political path dependencies that unwittingly entrench ‘Java-centric’ development, we illustrate how Indonesia’s distinct archipelagic thinking has co-evolved in recent history, and with what cultural resonance for its nation-building vision in the decades to come.