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New Books on SEAsia: Elisabeth Kramer on “The Candidate’s Dilemma”


In The Candidate’s Dilemma: Anticorruptionism and Cash Politics in Indonesian Election Campaigns (Cornell UP, 2022), Elisabeth Kramer tells the story of how three political candidates in Indonesia made choices to withstand, interact in, or in any other case incorporate cash politics into their electioneering methods over the course of their campaigns.

As they marketing campaign, candidates encounter stress from the institutional guidelines that information elections, political events, and voters, and should additionally negotiate complicated social relationships to stay aggressive. For anticorruption candidates, this context presents extra challenges for constructing and sustaining their identities. A few of these candidates set up their marketing campaign parameters early and are in a position to keep their course. For others, the marketing campaign path ends in an avalanche of compromises, every one consuming away at their sense of what constitutes “ethical” and “acceptable” habits. The Candidate’s Dilemma delves into the lived experiences of candidates to supply a nuanced research of how the political and private intersect in the case of cash politics, anticorruptionism, and electoral campaigning in Indonesia.

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Professor Michele Ford is the Director of the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, a university-wide multidisciplinary middle on the College of Sydney, Australia.

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