Increasing Social Class through Islamic Boarding Schools in Indonesia

Moh. Roqib


To increase social classes in the society, this study describes the community living in pesantren, an Islamic boarding school in Indonesia. Three research questions to be sought include: (1) What social class of santri on Pesantren is viewed by society in the pesantren culture and in the social setting? (2) How is the cultural basis of pesantren as an entity legally perceived throughout the history of the pesantren? and (3) How is pesantren as a social agency transformed in the community environment were the research questions. This research used a qualitative approach to data analysis and described its style as ethnography. Ethnography allowed for direct observation in a natural setting and embedded the researcher in a specific group to study its attitudes and interactions. The research participants in this study were 5 kiyais and 2 senior santris. Data were collected through direct observation, diary studies, video recordings, photography, and artifact analysis. Results show that pesantren does a good job reflecting the socioeconomic status of students attending the seminary. The low social class shows that support systems help in the success of the learning process, while the role of kiyai, the saint people, is vital. Since the Dutch colony, pesantrens have acted as cultural foundations. The association is legitimized because historically pesantrens have been agents of changes, cultural legitimacy, and a religious center of the view. Pesantren is a social reformer, a critical educational institution that can serve as cornerstones for change in society and the university. Such change is supported by a new modern infrastructural foundation, one built using modern technology-based systems. Furthermore, a pesantren is not merely a religious school. Still, the population has modernized the school to an institution that gives competitive knowledge, science, attitudes, and culture rooted in Islamic values.


pesantren, transformation, cultural change, religious agency

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