Aisyiyah and the marriage issue during the 1928 Indonesian women’s congress

Syahidah Sumayyah Rahman, Abdurakhman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Early 20th century was a national awakening era where Indonesian nationality began to grow marked by the establishment of Boedi Oetoemo. Women empowerment movement also started to become apparent in this era with the growing need to improve women’s position in marriage using education. After the national awakening, Indonesian movements are more organized with the establishment of various national organizations or political parties. The national awakening also causes women’s organizations to be established, either as a part of an existing organization or an independent entity.Aisyiyah is one of the oldest social-religion organizations which is still active until now and developed into a modern organization who have a strong social-religious character. Aisyiyah began to play a role on Indonesian women movement as soon as the organization was established. The establishment of Aisyiyah itself cannot be separated from the history of Muhammadiyah organization. Aisyiyah’s role in the women empowerment movement is shown when Aisyiyah attended the first Indonesian Women’s Congress 1928 in Yogyakarta. The participants of the Congress come from thirty women organizations in Indonesia. The previous research by Susan Blackburn in her book The First Indonesian Women Congress 1928 explains only about how the congress went, but does not provide any specific point of view from any organizations. From Susan Blackburn’s article in Journal of Southeast Asian Studies entitled Indonesian Women and Political Islam also only explains about Indonesian women position in Islam through time. The first Indonesian Women Congress discussed the problem experienced by women at that time, such as education, early marriage, and polygamy. One of the organization representatives conveyed their view on women’s position and situation at that time. One of the issues which became a hot topic during the congress was women’s position in marriage. Most of the organizations talked about how women’s position in marriage was really bad. They were also against polygamy which commonly practiced that time. By using a historical method consisting of heuristic, critic, interpretation, and historiography, this research reveals that Aisyiyah becomes the only organization who have a different view on women’s position in marriage. Aisyiyah points out that both women and men were not aware of their rights in marriage which make things seem like women have a bad position in marriage.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDissecting History and Problematizing the Past in Indonesia
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781536193992
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • Aisyiyah
  • Marriage
  • Polygamy
  • Women movement
  • Women organization


Dive into the research topics of 'Aisyiyah and the marriage issue during the 1928 Indonesian women’s congress'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this