Gintingan: An Indigenous Socio-cultural Institution in Subang, West Java
This Chapter is based on the strategy of the cultural dimension of development which has recently been introduced as an alternative approach to reach sustainable development. While some authors underscore the significance of an emic approach to development which engenders the full participation of the local people, other studies have shown that ignorance of the cultural factors in the development process generally leads to unsuccessful development programmes. The Chapter presents the case study of Gintingan as an interesting example of a local socio-cultural institution in the Subang Region of West Java, which is based on both communality in terms of joint participation in collective contributions to the community and individual assistance to fellow villagers in need. Furthermore, the description of the research on Gintingan in Kabupaten Subang documents the function of this local institution for many generations, representing an indigenous form of Community-Managed Development based on the Sundanese worldview of Tri Tangtu as the binding factor of the community. The practice of Gintingan is based on the principle of mutual assistance through reciprocal transactions, which is related to the pan-Indonesian institution of Gotong Royong originating from the Javanese culture and its parallel institutions of Andilan in the Sunda Region of West Java, and Metulung in Bali. Finally, a description is given of the important role which Gintingan is playing in the process of socio-economic development in the rural areas of West Java in terms of achieving human health and well-being. As such, it provides a sound basis for the implementation of a renewed strategy of integration of its significant principles of mutual assistance and communality in development policies, which in turn contribute to the realisation of poverty reduction and sustainable community development throughout the region.
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