Department of History

Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences

Former Academic

Professor Merle Calvin Ricklefs

PhD Cornell

Professor Merle Ricklefs gained his PhD from Cornell University and has held appointments at The School of Oriental and African Studies (London University), Monash University, All Souls College, and the National University of Singapore. He was Director of the Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies at the Australian National University and foundation Director of the Melbourne Institute of Asian Languages and Societies at the University of Melbourne . He resigned from Melbourne in 2005.

Professor Ricklefs is a scholar of the history and current affairs of Indonesia, whose recent research work has concentrated particularly on the role of Islam. He is currently writing a series of 3 volumes on the history of the Islamisation of Javanese society from the 14th century to the present day, the first two of which have been published. He has authored and edited several major books and many book chapters and refereed articles, as well as contributing to newspapers and radio broadcasts. He is on the editorial advisory boards of History Today and Studia Islamika , is Southeast Asia editor for the 3 rd edition of the authoritative Encyclopaedia of Islam (16 vols.), co-edits the Southeast Asia series of Handbuch der Orientalistik , and was until recently a member of the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Editorial Advisory Board for the publication series Documents on Australian Foreign Policy .
He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and a former member of the Australian National Commission for UNESCO. He was a founding member of the Australian Foreign Affairs Council and was until recently a member of the International Council of the Asia Society (New York). In 2003 he was awarded a Centenary Medal by the Government of Australia for service to Australian society and the humanities in the study of Indonesia.


- Jogjakarta under Sultan Mangkubumi, 1749–1792: A history of the division of Java . London Oriental Series, vol. 30. London : Oxford University Press, 1974. Revised Indonesian edition 2002
- (co-authored with P. Voorhoeve) Indonesian manuscripts in Great Britain: A catalogue of manuscripts in Indonesian languages in British public collections . London Oriental Bibliographies, vol. 5. Oxford : Oxford University Press, 1977
- Modern Javanese historical tradition: A study of an original Kartasura chronicle and related materials. London : School of Oriental and African Studies, 1978
- A history of modern Indonesia , ca. 1300 to the present . London & Basingstoke: Macmillan; Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 1981. 2nd edition (Palgrave and Stanford University Press) 1993. 3rd edition (Palgrave and Stanford University Press) 2001. Revised Indonesian edition 1991 (Gadjah Mada University Press); 2 nd revised Indonesian edition 2005 (Serambi). 4th English-language edition (Palgrave Macmillan and Stanford University Press) 2008; 3rd revised Indonesian-language edition (Serambi), 2008.
- War, culture and economy in Java, 1677–1726: Asian and European imperialism in the early Kartasura period. Sydney : Asian Studies Association of Australia in association with Allen and Unwin, 1993
- (edited and translated) Pantheism and monism in Javanese suluk literature: Islamic and Indian mysticism in an Indonesian setting , by P.J. Zoetmulder, S.J. Ed. and transl. M.C. Ricklefs. Leiden : KITLV Press, 1995
- The seen and unseen worlds in Java, 1726–49: History, literature and Islam in the court of Pakubuwana II. St. Leonards NSW: The Asian Studies Association of Australia in association with Allen and Unwin; Honolulu : The University of Hawai'i Press, 1998
- Mystic synthesis in Java: A history of Islamization from the fourteenth to the early nineteenth centuries. White Plains , NY : EastBridge, 2006
- Polarising Javanese society: Islamic and other visions, 1830-1930. Singapore: NUS Press; Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press; Leiden: KITLC Press, 2007.

".... Professor Merle Ricklefs is a scholar of the history and current affairs of Indonesia ..."