Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768dbb666b-vkhs7 Total loading time: 0.387 Render date: 2023-02-05T08:54:23.450Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

The Four Faces of Authoritarian Populism and Their Consequences on Journalistic Freedom: A Lesson Learnt From Indonesia's 2019 Presidential Election

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  25 August 2021

Nyarwi Ahmad*
Affiliation:
Gadjah Mada University, Indonesia
*
*Corresponding author. Email: nyarwiahmad@ugm.ac.id

Abstract

This article explores authoritarian populist mobilisation and media strategies that political elites who ran in the election advanced and their consequences on journalistic freedom in an emerging democracy. It focuses on Indonesia's democracy and examines the following questions: what types of authoritarian populist mobilisation and media strategies did Joko Widodo and Prabowo Subijanto adopt when contesting Indonesia's 2019 presidential election? To what degree did these adaptations impact the journalistic freedom of those who worked for Indonesian mainstream media, particularly Indonesian private TV news channels? In-depth interviews with four senior journalists associated with Indonesian TV news channels (Kompas TV, CNN Indonesia, TV One, and INews TV) and two senior journalists working for mainstream media owned by influential Indonesian oligarchs used qualitative and thematic content analyses to reveal the following findings. Jokowi and Prabowo adopted secular nationalist and Islamic authoritarian populist mobilisation during the election. However, Prabowo developed Islamic authoritarian populist mobilisation far more than Jokowi. Jokowi advanced an oligarchic authoritarian populist media strategy, while Prabowo established an intensive Islamic anti-oligarchic authoritarian populist media strategy. As authoritarian populist mobilisation and media strategies evolved during their campaigns, the journalistic freedom of those associated with Indonesian mainstream media declined substantially. This article introduces four faces of authoritarian populism — secular nationalist and Islamic authoritarian populist mobilisation and oligarchic and anti-oligarchic authoritarian populist media strategies — as new concepts enriching political elites’ authoritarian populism literature.

Type
Original Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of Institute of East Asian Studies, Sogang University

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Abdi, Alfian Putra. 2019. “AJI sebut wartawan bergaji kecil belum tentu dukung Prabowo,” 14 Feburary. Available at: https://tirto.id/aji-sebut-wartawan-bergaji-kecil-belum-tentu-dukung-prabowo-dg49Google Scholar
Adam, Zoltan. 2018. “Authoritarian populism at work: A political transaction cost approach with reference to Viktor Orbán's Hungary.” Working Paper Series 2, UCL Centre for Comparative Studies of Emerging Economies (CCSEE).Google Scholar
Ahmad, Nyarwi. 2017. “Marketisation and Professionalisation of Campaigning of Political Parties in the New Democracy: An Investigation of the Structural Conditions and Factors That Determined the Development of Marketization and Professionalization of Campaigning of the Indonesian Political Parties in the Post-Soeharto New Order.” PhD diss., Bournemouth University.Google Scholar
Ahmad, Nyarwi. 2019. “Indonesian news TV channels and polarized political issues.” Asian Politics & Policy 11(3): 505508.Google Scholar
Ahmad, Nyarwi. 2020a. “The rise of secular nationalist and Islamic-based populist communication strategies: New threats to Indonesian media and journalists' freedom.” In Handbook of Research on Combating Threats to Media Freedom and Journalist Safety, edited by Jamil, Sadia, 124146. Pennsylvania: IGI Global.Google Scholar
Ahmad, Nyarwi. 2020b. “Populist political ideation and communication of gubernatorial candidates in Indonesia's 2018 gubernatorial elections: Anti-establishment views, secular nationalism and Islamism as ideational-populist elements.” Asian Journal of Comparative Politics. https://doi.org/10.1177/2057891120931932Google Scholar
Ahmad, Nyarwi. 2021a. “What drive marketization and professionalization of campaigning of political parties in the emerging democracy? Evidence from Indonesia in the post-Soeharto new order.” Journal of Political Marketing. https://doi.org/10.1080/15377857.2021.1910610Google Scholar
Ahmad, Nyarwi. 2021b. “Political markets, the party-related factors and political party's market-orientation in Indonesia's democracy: Evidence from Indonesia's 2014 parliamentary election.” Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11135-021-01111-zGoogle Scholar
Albertazzi, Daniele, and McDonnell, Duncan. 2008. “Introduction: The sceptre and the spectre.” In Twenty-First Century Populism: The Spectre of Western European Democracy, edited by Albertazzi, Daniele, and McDonnell, Duncan, 111. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Apinino, Rio. 2018. “Ramai-ramai pemilik media merapat ke Jokowi buruk untuk emokrasi,” 8 September. Available at: https://tirto.id/ramai-ramai-pemilik-media-merapat-ke-jokowi-buruk-untuk-demokrasi-cXMHGoogle Scholar
Aspinall, Edward. 2015. “Oligarchic populism: Prabowo Subianto's challenge to Indonesian democracy.” Indonesia 99: 128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Aspinall, Edward, and Marcus, Mietzner. 2014. “Indonesian politics in 2014: Democracy's close call.” Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies 50(3): 347369.Google Scholar
Boyatzis, Richard E. 1998. Transforming Qualitative Information: Thematic Analysis and Code Development. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
Braun, Virginia, and Clarke, Victoria. 2006. “Using thematic analysis in psychology,” Qualitative Research in Psychology 3: 77101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bugaric, Bojan. 2019. “The two faces of populism: Between authoritarian and democratic populism.” German Law Journal 20: 390400Google Scholar
Butler-Kisber, Lynn. 2010. Qualitative Inquiry: Thematic, Narrative and Arts- Informed Perspectives. London: Sage Publications Ltd.Google Scholar
Chacko, Priya. 2018. “The right turn in India: Authoritarianism, populism and neoliberalisation.” Journal of Contemporary Asia 48(4): 541565.Google Scholar
Chacko, Priya. 2020. “Gender and authoritarian populism: Empowerment, protection, and the politics of resentful aspiration in India.” Critical Asian Studies 52(2): 204225.Google Scholar
Cresswell, John W. 2014. Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative and Mixed Methods Approaches. London: Sage Publication. Fourth EditionGoogle Scholar
Curato, Nicole. 2017. “Flirting with authoritarian fantasies? Rodrigo Duterte and the new terms of Philippine populism.” Journal of Contemporary Asia 47(1): 142153.Google Scholar
de Vreese, Clase H., Esser, Frank, Aalberg, Toriil, Reinemann, Carsten, and James, Stanyer. 2018. “Populism as an expression of political communication content and style: A new perspective.” The International Journal of Press/Politics 23(4): 423438.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Duillah, Irham. 2018. “Catatan akhir tahun 2018: Jurnalis dibayangi persekusi dan kekerasan fisik,” 31 December. Available at: https://aji.or.id/read/press-release/887/catatan-akhir-tahun-2018-jurnalis-dibayangi-persekusi-dan-kekerasan-fisik.htmlGoogle Scholar
Hadi, Syafiul. 2018. “Tiga Pemilik Media Massa di Barisan Pendukung Jokowi,” 10 September. Available at: https://nasional.tempo.co/read/1125147/tiga-pemilik-media-massa-di-barisan-pendukung-jokowi/fullandview=okGoogle Scholar
Hadiz, Vedi R. 2017. “Indonesia's year of democratic setbacks: Towards a new phase of deepening illiberalism?Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies 53(3): 261278.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hadiz, Vedi R. 2018. “Imagine all the people? Mobilising Islamic populism for right-wing politics in Indonesia.” Journal of Contemporary Asia 48(4): 566583.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hadiz, Vedi R., and Richard, Robison. 2017. “Competing populisms in post-authoritarian Indonesia.” International Political Science Review 38(4): 488502.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hamayotsu, Kikue. 2011. “The end of political Islam? A comparative analysis of religious parties in the Muslim democracy of Indonesia.Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs 30(3): 133159.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hamid, Abdul. 2014. “Jokowi's populism in the 2012 Jakarta gubernatorial election.” Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs 33(1): 85109.Google Scholar
Haryanto, Alexander. 2019. “AJI: Kekerasan terhadap 20 jurnalis saat aksi 22 mei harus diusut, 24 May. Available at: https://tirto.id/aji-kekerasan-terhadap-20-jurnalis-saat-aksi-22-mei-harus-diusut-d1JK (accessed 3 July 2019).Google Scholar
Hefner, Robert W. 2002. “Global violence and Indonesian Muslim politics.” American Anthropologist 104(3): 754765.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hewison, Kevin. 2017. “Reluctant populists: Learning populism in Thailand.” International Political Science Review 38(4): 426440.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ihsanuddin, . 2018. “Erick Thohir, pebisnis media yang jadi ketua tim kampanye Jokowi-Ma'ruf,” 7 September. Available at: https://nasional.kompas.com/read/2018/09/07/18454011/erick-thohir-pebisnis-media-yang-jadi-ketua-tim-kampanye-jokowi-maruf (accessed 3 July 2019).Google Scholar
Jagers, Jan, and Stefaan, Walgrave. 2007. “Populism as political communication style: An empirical study of political parties’ discourse in Belgium.” European Journal of Political Research 46(3): 319345.Google Scholar
Juego, Bonn. 2017. “The Philippines 2017: Duterte-led authoritarian populism and its liberal-democratic roots.” Asia Maior: The Journal of the Italian Think Tank 27: 129163.Google Scholar
Kenny, Paul D. 2019. “The enemy of the people: Populists and press freedom.” Political Research Quarterly. doi: 10.1177/1065912918824038.Google Scholar
Koltay, Andras. 2015. “What is press freedom now? New media, gatekeepers, and the old principles of the law.” In Comparative Perspectives on the Fundamental Freedom of Expression, edited by Koltay, Andras, 5388. Budapest: Budapest Wolters Kluwer.Google Scholar
Mazzoleni, Gianpietro. 2008. “Populism and the media.” In Twenty-First Century Populism: The Spectre of Western European Democracy, edited by Albertazzi, Daniele, and McDonnell, Duncan, 4964. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
Mietzner, Marcus. 2015. Reinventing Asian populism: Jokowi's rise, democracy, and political contestation in Indonesia. Policy Studies 72. Honolulu: East-West Center.Google Scholar
Mietzner, Marcus. 2020. “Authoritarian innovations in Indonesia: Electoral narrowing, identity politics and executive illiberalism.” Democratization 27(6): 10211036.Google Scholar
Morelock, Jeremiah. 2018. “Introduction: The Frankfurt School and authoritarian populism – A historical outline.” In Critical Theory and Authoritarian Populism, edited by Morelock, Jeremiah, xiiixxxviii. London: University of Westminster Press.Google Scholar
Morelock, Jeremiah, and Felipe N., Narita. 2018. “Public sphere and world-system: Theorizing populism at the margins.” In Critical Theory and Authoritarian Populism, edited by Morelock, Jeremiah, 135153. London: University of Westminster Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mudde, Cas. 2004. “The populist zeitgeist.” Government and Opposition 39(4): 541563.Google Scholar
Mudde, Cas, and Kaltwasser, Cristobal Rovira. 2012. Populism in Europe and the Americas: Threat or Corrective for Democracy? New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mudde, Cas, and Kaltwasser, Cristobal Rovira. 2013. “Exclusionary vs. inclusionary populism: Comparing contemporary Europe and Latin America.Government and Opposition 48: 147174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mudde, Cas, and Kaltwasser, Cristobal Rovira. 2017. Populism: A Very Short Introduction. New York: Oxford University PressGoogle Scholar
Mudde, Cas, and Kaltwasser, Cristobal Rovira. 2018. “Studying populism in comparative perspective: Reflections on the contemporary and future research agenda.” Comparative Political Studies 51(13): 16671693.Google Scholar
Muhtadi, Burhanuddin. 2015. “Jokowi's first year: A weak president caught between reform and oligarchic politics.” Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies 51(3): 349368.Google Scholar
Nasution, Rahmad. 2019. “Prabowo Subianto's blunt message to media workers,” 30 March. Available at: https://en.antaranews.com/news/122992/prabowo-subiantos-blunt-message-to-media-workers (accessed 3 July 2019).Google Scholar
Nugroho, Yanuar, and Sofie, Syarief. 2012. Beyond Click Activism: New Media and Political Processes in Contemporary Indonesia. Berlin: Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung.Google Scholar
Phongpaichit, Pasuk, and Chris, Baker. 2004. Pluto-populism in Thailand: Business Remaking Politics. New Haven: Populism and Reformism in Southeast Asia.Google Scholar
Phongpaichit, Pasuk, and Chris, Baker. 2005. “Business populism in Thailand.” Journal of Democracy 16 (2): 5872.Google Scholar
Phongpaichit, Pasuk, and Baker, Chris. 2008. “Thaksin's populism.” Journal of Contemporary Asia 38(1): 6283Google Scholar
Power, Thomas. 2018. “Jokowi's authoritarian turn and Indonesia's democratic decline.” Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies 54(3): 307338.Google Scholar
Putri, Budiarti U. 2018. “Prabowo Subianto express distaste against media, journalists,” 5 December. Available at: https://en.tempo.co/read/924014/prabowo-subianto-express-distaste-against-media-journalists (accessed 3 July 2019).Google Scholar
Raharjo, Dwi B. 2019. “Jurnalis dipersekusi di munajat 212, AJI Jakarta: Laskar FPI melawan hukum,” 26 February. Available at: http://ajijakarta.org/2019/02/26/jurnalis-dipersekusi-di-munajat-212-aji-jakarta-laskar-fpi-melawan-hukum/ (accessed 3 July 2019)Google Scholar
Reinemann, Carsten, Stanyer, James, Aalberg, Toril, Esser, Frank, and De Vreese, Claes H.. 2019. “Introduction: Comprehending and investigating populist communication from a comparative perspective.” In Communicating Populism: Comparing Actor Perceptions, Media Coverage, and Effects on Citizens in Europe, edited by Reinemann, Carsten, Stanyer, James, Aalberg, Toril, Esser, Frank, and De Vreese, Claes H., 114. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tapsell, Rose. 2015. “Indonesia's media oligarchy and the ‘Jokowi phenomenon.” Indonesia 99 : 2950.Google Scholar
Van Bruinessen, Martin. 2002. “Genealogies of Islamic radicalism in post-Suharto Indonesia.” Southeast Asia Research 10(2): 117154.Google Scholar
Van Bruinessen, Martin. 2013. “Introduction: Contemporary developments in Indonesian Islam and the “conservative turn” of the early twenty-first century.” In Contemporary Developments in Indonesian Islam: Explaining the ‘Conservative Turn,’ edited by Bruinessen, Martin Van, 120. Singapore: ISEAS Publishing.Google Scholar
Waisbord, Silvio. 2012. “Democracy, journalism, and Latin American populism.” Journalism 14(4): 504521.Google Scholar
Winters, Jeffry A. 2013. “Oligarchy and democracy in Indonesia.” Indonesia 96(1): 1133.Google Scholar
Ziv, Daniel. 2001. “Populist perceptions and perceptions of populism in Indonesia: The case of Megawati Soekarnoputri.” South East Asia Research 9(1): 7388.Google Scholar

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

The Four Faces of Authoritarian Populism and Their Consequences on Journalistic Freedom: A Lesson Learnt From Indonesia's 2019 Presidential Election
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

The Four Faces of Authoritarian Populism and Their Consequences on Journalistic Freedom: A Lesson Learnt From Indonesia's 2019 Presidential Election
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

The Four Faces of Authoritarian Populism and Their Consequences on Journalistic Freedom: A Lesson Learnt From Indonesia's 2019 Presidential Election
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *