Dutch colonialism of Indonesia is a tragic moment that will remain a history and never be forgotten by the people of Indonesia. History of Dutch Colonization in Indonesia was lasting after 350 years the Indonesia colonized by the Dutch. The colonial period is a difficult time for the people of Indonesia since it causes a misery for Indonesians. Dutch colonialism of course gives both of positive and negative effects. You could read on these following paragraphs to know them.
- Technology that introduced through the Dutch
The development of science and technology in was introduced by the Dutch colonial government. At that time, Indonesians were introduced both light and heavy modern armaments. Other technologies that used by the Dutch such as combat vehicles as transportation.
These technologies came from countries in Europe. Then the Dutch colonial government taught those sciences and technology through the education in school. They also taught directly how to use to the technology toward Indonesians.
- Got much Knowledge in Agriculture
Through the cultuur stelsel, Indonesian became good in getting the knowledge of agriculture. As you know that Dutch is a country with the great technology in farming and agriculture. Automotacally, they delivered their skill in agriculture toward Indonesian.
However, the system of agriculture toward Indonesian was forced labor. It means that their activties in agriculture was determined by the Dutch. Even, they must give more than a half fromthe result of their production to the Dutch.
- The large scale of Infrastructure Development
This could be both good and bad effect of the Dutch colonialism. The idas of the dutch to make the highway from Anyer to Panarukan gave totally the significant infrastructure in Indonesia. Although many Indonesia tht worked withougt given food and salary, all the things in the infrastructure in Indonesia ran very well in Indonesia.
The result of the reconstruction even still remind today. This reflected that a Dutch architects are very artistic since they referred to build an area that is comfortable to be inhabited by residents.
- Education was getting better
In the colonial period, the Dutch government provided a diverse school for Indonesians to meet the needs of the various class of society. If the parents earned 100 guilders a month, from the age of 6 the people may go to Hollandsche Inlandsche School (HIS).
If they were a native-born child, even though their skin is brown and had no European or Dutch blood, they might start studying at Europesche Lager School (ELS). The education in this era was getting better although not all people able to afford it. It was only the child who came from the noble parents who could get the proper education.
- Indonesia learn foreign Language for early time
During the Dutch colonial period, English was taught at the level of MULO (Meer Uitgebreid Lager Onderwijs) and AMS (Algemeene Middlebare School). At that time, only Dutch children and certain indigenous people were allowed to attend MULO (equivalent to junior high school) and AMS (equivalent to high school).
For other indigenous people, it was only able to go to elementary school. The use of Dutch language in a class also became the start how Indonesian learn the language for the first time.
- Indonesians know the plants that sell well in European market
Due the forced labor system in the agriculture, Indonesian started to know the marketing strategy toward the international market. They became familiar to what plant and productions which had the high demand in European market. It was also the good effect for most of Indonesians in that time since they just planted the monotone product in every year. However, after the Dutch colonialism, they were forced to plant the potential product by request.
- Indonesians getting poorer
Next, it would continue to some bad effect of Dutch. It was not an issue that the local people of Indonesian getting poorer after the Dutch came. Their system in labor, monopoly, even the trade just made the great benefit for them, but not for Indonesians. They had to work day and night without any salary, food, even the enough rest time. The number of poverty for local people was totally increased in that era.
- Agricultural production purchased very cheaply
The Dutch made a rule that half production result of local’s plantation had to be owned by the Dutch government. They would by the local’s plant production with a very cheap price. Of course it made Indonesian felt very disadvantaged by the rule. For the people who didn’t agree to sell their products toward the Dutch, they would be punished with inhuman punishment.
Cultuure Stelsel (forced Cultivation) had many negative impacts on people’s lives. Many workers were sick. They were forced to focus on working in Cultivation. Even, they have no time to take care of themselves and their families. The rate of starvation was increasing rapidly in some regions. In Cirebon the starvation happened in 1843, in Demak was in 1849, and in Grobogan was occurred in 1850.
- The raising of death rate
In many areas, the VOC conducted acts without any humanity, such as torturing and killing most of the population on Banda Island and replaced by slave labor. The VOC also slaughtered the Ambon people in 1623. It was famous with the Ambon massacre. Moreover, the forced cultivation caused the people suffering from hunger and massive immigration occurred in Cirebon.
- Rice fields was displaced because of forced labor
The ricefield during the periode of Dutch colonialism was replaced by the spice plantation. It was aimed to give the great benefit from Dutch since the spice masrket was very good in the world at that time. Through this reason, Dutch became so obsessive to force Indonesians change their plantation. They even didn’t care that the rice was actually the main foods for Indonesian.
- A lot of disease
Some contagious disease during Dutch Colonialism attacked the local people of Indonesia. It occurred since most of them didn’t care their health anymore. The poverty and bad sanitation also became the main factor of the disease. The disease that occurred during the Dutch colonialism such as leprosy, smallpox, cholera, malaria, and TBC were became more serious day by day. Then the Dutch established a shelter for the sick people.
Those are the effect of Dutch colonialism in Indonesia. However, Indonesia and Dutch has become two countries with a good relationship today. In conclusion, both of those countries has moved on from the past tragedy.