History of Ubud

The Ubud Area from the Bronze Age to the Information Age

Culture and Religion
Megalithic Monuments and Wandering Mystics
The "Golden Age" of the Majapahit Kingdoms
Competing Rajadoms Rise and Fall Rise Again
Ubud as a Darling of the Dutch Colonists
Yet Another Era of Battle, International and Internal
The World Sends Its Curious to Call
Prognosis for Paradise
Culture & Religion
News & Gossip
by The Ubud Team
The challenge for Ubud now, is to avoid becoming a victim of its own popularity; of being loved to death. It is undergoing rapid development, and has been "discovered" by a tide of jetsetters and successful business people and glamourati from around the world, and from the increasingly unpleasant lndonesian capital in Jakarta. Land development is largely without planning. Commercial forces holdsway in most arenas. In reaction to the rapid in flux of foreign ways, there is a strong current of reactionary neoconservatism, leading the retreat into an accumulation of increasingly expensive rituals and their innumerable concomitant tasks and responsibilities.

Those who have prospered from tourist dollars continue to do so, and social and economic in equalities are becoming uncomfortably apparent. Brand new BMWs park alongside rice fields with "For Sale" signs, where women are bent double, cutting crops by hand for less than a dollar a day. Elite, high-caste ladies wear silk, French brocade and solid gold jewellery to the temples. While they sip coffee, gossip, and complain about their husbands' alleged indiscretions with foreign lovers, the men in question huddle in dark corners to answer handphones which are pressed tight to their ears to shut out the sound of the gamelan, with hands lavishly adorned by Rolex watches and enormous rings.

How Ubud's future takes shape will be partly determined by the wider economic and political milieu (Jakarta, the elections in 1997, the whims of the tourist industry). Far more influential will be the actions of its leaders, many of whom are descendants of the Sukawati royal family who still control vast tracts of land and exercise various hereditary privileges, not all of them uncontroversial. These leaders have taken it upon them selves to serve as the custodians of Ubud's cultural integrity, and as such are the preservers of much of its value. Their sensitivity and their potential for benevolent and humanitarian leadership will make or break this town.

Home Hotels Food Money Events Resources Jakarta Industry

[.Home.] [.Hotels.] [.Food.] [.Money.] [.Events.] [.Resources.] [.Jakarta.] [.Industry.]

Copyright © 1995-1997 Bali Online