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Opium to Java: Revenue Farming and Chinese Enterprise in Colonial Indonesia 1860-1910. Opium smoking was a widespread social custom in 19th-century Java, and commercial trade in opium had far-reaching economic and political implications. As in many of the Dutch territories in the Indonesian archipelago, the drug was imported from elsewhere and sold throughout the island under a government monopoly - a system of revenue "farms". These monopoly franchises were regulated by the government and operated by members of Java's Chinese elite, who were frequently also local officials appointed by the Dutch. The farms thus helped support large Chinese patronage networks that vied for control of rural markets throughout Java. James Rush explains the workings of the opium farm system during its mature years by measuring the social, economic, and political reach of these monopolies within the Dutch-dominated colonial society. His analysis of the opium farm incorporates the social history of opium smoking in Java and of the Chinese officer elite that dominated not only the opium farming but also the island's Chinese community and much of its commercial economy. He describes the relations among the various classes of Chinese and Javanese, as well as the relation of the Chinese elite to the Dutch, and he traces the political interplay that smuggling and the black market stimulated among all these elements. This is a reissue of a classic, first published by Cornell University Press in 1990.

Opium to Java

SKU: 042748
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    Rush, James R.
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    Equinox Publishing

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