“Man is by nature a social animal”, according to Aristotle (384 BC- 322 BC). The history of human civilization is filled with records on when and how the world’s communities or societies were segregated by geography, race, ideas, religion, nationality, cultural characteristics, or by other categories. Yet, mankind always managed to find ways to reconnect, for many reasons. For some, the reason might have been innate desire to be a part of a bigger group; while for some others, it might be an attempt to unite the many different groups our ambition to rule.
In Blitar - East Java, the effort to be inclusive could be traced back to the 11th – 12th century. They were carved in stones and placed as reliefs in Candi Panataran. Those reliefs do not depict religious teachings or moral lessons as the reliefs in Candi Borobudur do, nor they illustrate a myth as is in Candi Prambanan. Instead, they portray human interactions and common living arrangement of people in various costumes and head-dresses. Despite being eroded by the many years that have passed, there are still clear signs of connections between different cultures, races, and communities. The details for these reliefs remain inconclusive to this day.
This paper discusses the possible identity of the authority figure behind the building of Candi Panataran, his/her motivation, and the meanings beneath these reliefs.
Keywords: History, connectedness, artefacts
Lilly Harmawan Setiono, Bandung Institute of Technology, Indonesia
Stream: Arts & Humanities
This paper is part of the ACAH2013 Conference Proceedings (View)
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