Amir Effendi Siregar Forum # 2: Soeharto’s Regime Influences Indonesian Communication Curriculum and Research (2)

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Justito Adiprasetio’s opportunity in the second series of the Amir Effendi Siregar Forum revealed various influences in the Communication Science discourse in Indonesia. He explained that there were influences from German, American scholar and Suharto’s order in the Communication Studies Discourse in Indonesia.

“So, the discourse on ‘information’ as we know that in Unpad there was a study program in communication management, there used to be information science. Formerly in several campuses, there were departments majoring in communication, namely information science, even publicist science used to be under knowledge,” said Tito , Justito’s nickname.

Discourse on ‘information’, Publicist, till Communication Science

In fact, Tito continued, information science is a subject in publicist science. Tito traced this discourse of information before 1945. The Information Department was also one of the first 12 Indonesian departments, said Tito. While the term ‘publicist science’ based on Tito’s tracking, emerged in the 60s when many Indonesian academics were affected and studied in Germany. Germany uses the term publicist before referring to the study of media and communication.

“Publisistik or publizeren or terminology in German language has a wider scope than journalism. But of course both are different from the communication terminology that we know today. Because that will later become the argument of Professor Astrid Susanto who will later change it,” said Tito in the middle discussion via this Zoom application.

In 1949 the name of the political academy in Jogja emerged. The data that Tito found, the academy was the first to teach the science of information. “Later this political science academy will turn into the department of social political science, Faculty of Law, UGM,” he explained.

How about the twists and turns of Communication Studies in Indonesia?

According to Tito, there are publicist teaching authorities, such as Unpad and UGM publicists. The change of Publication Science in the 1970s to communication science proposed by Prof. Astrid Susanto, “this was once a Dean of Unpad then moved to UI,” he said. Tito explained, according to some academics, there was a paradigm shift in science at the time. “Almost all of them argue, including me, to argue, this is a transition from the paradigm of science that was previously German, from the continental European paradigm, to the new direction of American anglo saxon,” said Tito.

“If we trace the books of the 1950s, we can see that in America there is a lot of communication science. Previously, the Laswell school was stormed, then other contestants appeared, Lazarsfeld,” TIto revealed his tracking. Lazarfeld, said Tito, had collaboration with Horkheimer and Adorno (German scientists). They did joint research even though the approach seemed somewhat different, he said. Tito also explained communication figures who were infatuated during the 50s period in America such as Curt Levin, or Hovland who first introduced the method of experimentation in communication science.

USA’s Effect?

The legitimacy of Communication Studies in the United States of America actually began to reverberate in the 1950s on campuses there. In 1970, that paradigm affected Indonesia. The Meaning is, said Tito, at that time, the paradigm of ‘communication science’ had begun to be discussed by Indonesian academics. “That is the basis of many who say communication science education has begun to shift from continental Europe to the Anglo-Saxon,” Tito added.

Is it right? According to Tito, this argument is not too wrong, because in the 1960s, there was Professor Alwi Dahlan, an Indonesian who first visited America. Alwi got his doctorate in 1967. He, said Tito, was one of the first scholars in Indonesian communication who completed his studies in America.

Continued with the Soeharto Regime and Communication of Developmentalism