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Farnanda .
David Efendi
Alif Azadi Taufik
Tunjung Sulaksono


Public Spaces, Acehnese Coffee Shops, Political Participation, Identity, Local Politics


Purpose: This paper aims to recognize a new form of political participation that is expressed by Acehnese coffee shop drinkers in supporting and criticizing local Acehnese politics, particularly those in Yogyakarta. Furthermore, this research examines the role of informal movements and clubs involved in decision-making related issues of Acehnese living in Yogyakarta.

Methodology:This is a critical qualitative approach with in-depth interviews and participatory observation over several months. Participatory observation was conducted through immersive participation in Acehnese coffee shops as public spaces and in-depth interviews with coffee shop managers, community leaders, and regular customers.

Findings: The Acehnese unique cultural and social culture of coffee drinking plays a dynamic role with Acehnese community’s relationship with politics. This culture facilitates the existence of Acehnese identity in Yogyakarta and intensifies political participation through informal discussion. Acehnese coffee shops are free and autonomous public spaces, which are collectively owned and persevered by the community.

Implication: Informal politics and local identity expressed through far political distances are interesting in Indonesia to examine social cohesion and capital nationwide. Out study also develops a model contributes to political science in Indonesian by explaining the relationship between informal and formal politics. It helps explain differences of different cultural and ethnic groups in Indonesia.

Originality: Our paper investigates the perspective of local politics within Indonesian politics. Furthermore, most contemporary political research focuses on formal and official politics, while this paper uncovers long distance informal politics embedded in unique Acehnese social culture in coffee shops. The civic contribution of Acehnese coffee shops as a public place in Indonesian democracy is convincingly established in this paper.


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