Opium-related Problems and the Limit of the Colonial State Authority, 1870-1930s

Abdul Wahid, Ph.D














The Dutch government policy on opium was one of the most controversial issues in colonial Indonesia since the mid-nineteenth century. The controversy aroused from ‘moral’ consideration condemning the fact that the colonial state took profits from selling opium, heroine and other related products. In cooperation with the opium monopoly (opiumregie), the colonial police department created a special anti-opium unit as an effort to mitigate the opium problems (opiumkwestie), particularly smuggling and illegal opium distribution. Using the (colonial) government and non-government sources, this paper investigate the work of the anti-opium squad in the late colonial period. It argues that the work of this organization was highly influenced by the ‘political stand’ of the colonial state on opium and its financial interests, and hence it reflected the capacity of colonial state and the nature of its ‘governance’ in general.



Abdul Wahid, Ph.D, is a teaching staff at the Department of History, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta. Earned his bachelor and master degree from Gadjah Mada he also obtained his M. Phil  from University Leiden, and his Ph.D from Utrech University, the Netherland.  From October to December 2013, he conducted a post-doctoral research at the KITLV Leiden on ‘The Dutch Military Operation in Indonesia, 1945-1949’.




Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

@ 1 – 3 PM


CRCS, Room 406, 4th floor of Graduate School (Sekolah Pascasarjana) UGM Building

Jl. Teknika Utara, Pogung, Yogykarta.



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