Journal of Social and Political
ISSN 2615-3718 (Online)
ISSN 2621-5675 (Print)
Published: 18 February 2022
Murals as Social Criticism: Movements of Resistance and Urban Liberation Against the Authoritarian of Regimes
Luthfi Habibullah A, Bagus Haryono, Argyo Demartoto
University of Sebelas Maret, Surakarta, Indonesia
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Keywords: Mural, Social Criticism, Social Movement, Authoritarianism
The Economist Intelligence Unit's report (EIU) shows that the democracy index score in Indonesia has decreased in the last 5 years, and that number could decrease even more when the state makes society an object of conflict in which public criticism is threatened and silenced. There is an unfavorable relationship between power and society in the state process. Art in the concept of urban society is understood as a medium of awareness and liberation. Public awareness will give birth to a critical culture in identifying injustice and how to change it. Muralism is a form of criticism movement due to the disappointment and dissatisfaction of the Indonesian people towards the performance of the State and the power of authoritarianism in the midst of social, health and economic crises due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This thought movement was carried out through mural writing on the walls as a form of intellectual resistance to the authoritarian style of power and its policies which were far from the expectations of the people. This study uses a qualitative method with a phenomenological approach. The results of the study show that the freedom of expression carried out by urban communities through mural writing, graffiti, satire is always responded to by repressive actions by the authorities, ranging from arrests, silencing, deletion of murals, hacking social media, doxing, verbative intimidation, and other forms of threats. This condition turned into a curse for the style of authoritarianism. Currently, various vices and crimes of power are starting to be revealed, such as corruption, pandemics becoming business projects, tax smuggling by state officials, acts of violence, human rights violations, sexual harassment by state officials and others. This became a prolonged dark spot and became the basis of community resistance to make fundamental changes to the condition of the State.
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