The Killing Season: A History of the Indonesian Massacres, 1965-66

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Product Details
Princeton University Press
Publish Date
6.5 X 9.4 X 1.6 inches | 1.95 pounds

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About the Author
Geoffrey B. Robinson is professor of history at the University of California, Los Angeles. His books include The Dark Side of Paradise: Political Violence in Bali and "If You Leave Us Here, We Will Die" How Genocide Was Stopped in East Timor (Princeton). Before coming to UCLA, he worked for six years at Amnesty International's Research Department in London. Robinson lives in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter.
"Robinson [displays his] ability to combine, with chilling calm, a broad theoretical analysis and comparative analysis with a detailed understanding of events."---Adrian Vickers, Times Literary Supplement
"This meticulous scholarly analysis of the country's institutions comprehensively investigates the economic, religious, ethnic, and socioeconomic factors behind the arrests, rape, torture, and murder that were inflicted on communist true believers and innocents alike. Robinson's authoritative scholarly work is an indispensable resource for specialists seeking a comprehensive overview of this little-studied period in Southeast Asian history."--Publisher's Weekly
"Crucial. . . . The Killing Season is clearly and elegantly written, the prose often driven by a controlled anger."---Alex de Jong, Jacobin
"This is an important and extensively researched account about the activities and consequences of state terrorism, using the Indonesian experience as its case study."---Joshua Sinai, Perspectives on Terrorism
"In this masterful account . . . the killings receive the comprehensive, scholarly treatment they have long needed."---Tony Barber, Financial Times
"Robinson, an expert on human rights, concludes with a thought provoking analysis of why mass killings and illegal detentions take place, and considers the long-term consequences of the events of 1965-1966 for Indonesian society. He has written a clear and well documented book which is essential reading for anyone interested in modern Indonesian history."---Roger Hamilton, Asian Affairs
"An encyclopedic exploration into this event, why it happened, who supported it, and what its impact on the nation has been. . . . The Killing Season is a very powerful book. I strongly recommend it."---Erik Loomis, Lawyers, Guns & Money
"[Robinson's] book skilfully combines a human rights advocate's anger with academic rigour."---Julia Lovell, The Guardian
"A useful contribution to regional history and a much-needed voice in the 'path of silence' that followed a murderous time."--Kirkus
"Robinson's work is painstakingly careful and deserves as wide a readership as possible. . . . The real importance of this book is that it exposes in meticulous detail a modern genocide from the inside out. Governments and politicians could learn from this to prevent genocides before they even happen."---Richard Cockett, Literary Review
"The facts and horrors of [the Indonesian massacres of 1965-66] are the subject of Geoffrey B. Robinson's essential volume, The Killing Season. In careful detail, Robinson lays out the background for the slaughter and its execution, laying blame squarely on those Indonesians and Western powers responsible for what he calls a crime against humanity--the aftereffects of which are still apparent today."---Mitchell Abidor, Jewish Currents
"Robinson's The Killing Season is a vital work in documenting one of the worst mass killings of the 20th century -- and exposing the complicity of Western governments."--Green Left Weekly
"Robinson's work is a valuable contribution to the ongoing debate on the 1965 events that draws on a rich body of primary and secondary sources. The book is an easy read when it comes to language and an enlightening read when it comes to the details of army operation and strategies. It is a must-read for Indonesianists, and many part of the book might also draw the attention of people dedicated to genocide and military studies in general."---Timo Duile, Austrian Journal of Southeast Asian Studies
"Robinson's masterly account of the terrible slaughters that took place in Indonesia offers important reflections on the nature of mass violence."---Christopher Hale, History Today
"This book is recommended for those trying to understand the causes, both domestic and international, behind the massacres of 1965-66. It is also an insight into Indonesia's continuing struggle to come to terms with this painful episode in its history."---Frank Beyer, Inside Indonesia
"Geoffrey Robinson emphasizes that one of his main objectives in writing this book was to 'disturb the troubling silence.' I have waited many years for such a book to appear, one which I hoped would help to pierce the West's historical amnesia. Robinson has written an extraordinary work that does full justice to this neglected topic. Deeply researched and packed with fascinating and revelatory information, The Killing Season is considered, scholarly, well-argued, and absolutely gripping reading. As soon as I finished reading this book, I wanted to dive right back into it again."---Gregory Elich, CounterPunch
"Of the world's mass killings since 1945, the genocide in Indonesia stands out as remaining unfamiliar to many, and still presenting unsolved questions while possessing high death tolls. This book is essential for understanding the Indonesian tragedy and why humans sometimes do terrible things on a vast scale."--Jared Diamond, University of California, Los Angeles
"The Killing Season left me heartbroken. I've spent fifteen years exposing the consequences of impunity for Indonesia's genocide, and it was a painful catharsis to read this, the first morally honest, timelessly brilliant history of the killings as a whole. Geoffrey Robinson's tone is a mixture of gentleness, empathy, and quiet anger--as though he knows Indonesia's terrible silence can only be broken with grace. But this book also breaks an American silence, for Robinson reveals that the massacres would never have happened without U.S. support: this genocide is an American crime too. The Killing Season is a breathtaking, essential book."--Joshua Oppenheimer, director of The Act of Killing and The Look of Silence
"Finally, a full accounting of one of the most brutal events in twentieth-century history. Geoffrey Robinson's The Killing Season documents, in chilling detail, the mass murder of half a million Indonesians between 1965 and 1966. Based on fine-grained research, Robinson's book is a model of analytical and moral clarity, shining a damning light on U.S. complicity in the atrocity. This is a tour de force."--Greg Grandin, author of Fordlandia
"This elegantly written and carefully crafted book provides the single most sustained and systematic evaluation of the competing and contradictory theories concerning the coup which helped to precipitate the mass killings of late 1965 and early 1966 in Indonesia. Robinson's arguments are clear, coherent, and compelling, and the evidence presented is impressively well-documented. This is the definitive account of a highly important aspect of Indonesian history."--John T. Sidel, London School of Economics and Political Science
"This masterful and engrossing book illuminates the mass violence and incarceration that took place during the transition to the three-decade Suharto dictatorship in Indonesia. Displaying a superb command of Indonesian history and sources, The Killing Season is an important corrective to conventional wisdom about a little-known genocidal campaign that destroyed an estimated 500,000 victims."--Jens Meierhenrich, London School of Economics and Political Science
"Remarkable."---Ken Silverstein, New Republic
"I see The Killing Season as a must-read for anyone interested in Indonesia and broadly defined human rights issues of Southeast Asia for its unparalleled comprehensiveness, solid archival research, and elegant writing style."---Kankan Xie, New Books Asia
"An authoritative and harrowing account of the massacres in Indonesia and their aftermath."---Gary J. Bass, Foreign Affairs
"One of Foreign Affairs' Picks for Best of Books 2018"
"Longlisted for the 2019 ICAS Book Prize in Humanities, International Convention of Asia Scholars"
"Winner of the Raphael Lemkin Book Award, Institute for the Study of Genocide"
"One of the Financial Times' Best Books of 2018: History"