Revolusi: Indonesia and the Birth of the Modern World (Hardcover)

Revolusi: Indonesia and the Birth of the Modern World By David Van Reybrouck Cover Image
Usually Ships in 1-5 Days


From the internationally best-selling writer, a masterful account of the epic revolution that sparked the decolonization of the modern world.

On a sunny Friday morning in August 1945, a handful of people raised a homemade cotton flag and, on behalf of 68 million compatriots, announced the birth of a new nation. With the fourth largest population in the world, inhabiting islands that span an eighth of the globe, Indonesia became the first country to rid itself of colonial rule after World War II.

In this vivid history, renowned scholar and celebrated author of Congo David Van Reybrouck captures a period of extraordinary tumult and chaos to tell the story of Indonesia’s momentous revolution, known as the “Revolusi.” Encompassing several hundred years of history, he details the formation of the Dutch East Indies, the Japanese invasion that followed, and the young rebels who engaged in armed resistance once the occupation ended. British and Dutch troops were sent to restore order and keep peace, but instead ignited the first modern war of decolonization. America, too, became embroiled with the Indonesians’ fierce struggle for freedom. That struggle inspired independence movements in Asia, Africa, and the Arab world, especially in the wake of Indonesia’s monumental 1955 Bandung Conference, the first global conference without the West. The whole world had become involved in Revolusi, and the whole world was changed by it.

Drawing on hundreds of interviews and eyewitness testimonies, David Van Reybrouck turns this vast and complex story into an utterly gripping narrative, written with remarkable historical clarity and filled with tragedy and passion. A landmark history, Revolusi cements Indonesia’s struggle for independence as one of the defining dramas of the twentieth century and entirely reframes our understanding of post-colonialism.

About the Author

David Van Reybrouck is the internationally bestselling author of Congo, which was a finalist for the Cundill Prize for History, and an acclaimed playwright. He holds a doctorate from Leiden University and has taught at Bard College. He lives in Brussels, Belgium.

Praise For…

A long overdue and utterly compelling narrative history of the birth of Indonesia…It is as intricate as the waterways of the archipelago and yet it hums along, like a steamer on the Java Sea, propelled by the stories of its astonishing cast.
— Alec Russell - Financial Times

A superb history of the struggle for independence after three centuries of Dutch colonial rule.
— Guardian

Important…[D]eciphers a critical chapter in Asian and global history.
— Kirkus Reviews

A rare blend of formal daring, intellectual resourcefulness, and journalistic fluency, Revolusi briskly ushers Indonesia onto the center stage of modern history. It reveals, too, decolonization as the main event of the twentieth century—what has shaped our present and will decisively define the future.

— Pankaj Mishra, author of Age of Anger

An astounding feat of both research and storytelling.… History at its best.
— Yuval Noah Harari, author of Sapiens

A magnificent fusion of oral history, sparkling analysis, and historical wisdom. Revolusi has it all: a masterpiece.

— Sebastian Mallaby, author of More Money Than God

A comprehensive, authoritative, and highly readable history. Seamlessly interwoven with hundreds upon hundreds of personal testimonies, David Van Reybrouck’s narrative is a masterly display of the historian’s craft and a welcome corrective to the fiction that the Dutch in the East Indies were a benign force.
— J. M. Coetzee, author of The Pole

Among the book’s many gifts—the depth of its research, the breadth of its inquiries, the poetry of its prose—it is this that has affected me the most: the insistence and humility of finding and allowing these voices, these eyewitnesses to history, to come to the fore. With scientific meticulousness and a rare narrative brilliance, Revolusi gives us a history at once vast and intimate, a history in color.

— Laksmi Pamuntjak, author of The Question of Red

Passionate, rigorous, perceptive, powerful, and highly readable. Van Reybrouck combines a historian’s clear analytic eye with a journalist’s joy at discovering and recounting the experiences of participants in great events. This is a magisterial but gripping account of events of urgent importance to us now.
— Jason Burke, author of The 9/11 Wars

History as it should be! Carried by a democracy of ordinary voices, meticulous research, an eye for decisive detail, vivid language, and drama, David Van Reybrouck forges a fantastic visionary compass to where history was heading at the time…the imagining of a new world order by people of color.
— Antjie Krog, author of Country of My Skull

Product Details
ISBN: 9781324073697
ISBN-10: 1324073691
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Publication Date: April 9th, 2024
Pages: 656
Language: English

Indie Bestsellers

This feature require that you enable JavaScript in your browser.

Kids Indie Next List

This feature require that you enable JavaScript in your browser.

Reading Group Indie Next List

This feature require that you enable JavaScript in your browser.
Zircon - This is a contributing Drupal Theme
Design by WeebPal.