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Archipel a 50 ans

Fifty Years of the Journal Archipel (1971/1-2020/100): Figures and Trends

Cinquante années de la revue Archipel (1971/1-2020/100): chiffres et tendances
Daniel Perret
p. 23-34

Résumés

Cet article présente une série de statistiques sur les 100 premiers numéros d'Archipel, qui offrent un corpus de près de 25 000 pages. Seize graphiques mettent en évidence diverses caractéristiques : évolution du nombre de pages, catégorisation des contributions, variations concernant les notes de recherche et articles, nombre de signatures selon les nationalités, évolution concernant les textes publiés en français et en anglais, répartition des occurrences des textes selon leurs cadres géographiques, répartition des occurrences des textes en termes chronologiques, répartition des comptes rendus d'ouvrages et consultations en ligne. L'un des enseignements de cette étude statistique est le nombre important de signatures d'Asie du Sud-Est. Par ailleurs, l'internationalisation d'Archipel est réelle, puisque près de la moitié des signatures sont étrangères (32 nationalités). Le corollaire de ce phénomène est la place croissante prise par l'anglais. L'examen du corpus a également mis en évidence l'apparition d'un nouveau format à partir du début du siècle, format qui se traduit par des textes moins nombreux mais plus longs. Enfin, grâce à la révolution Internet, Archipel a acquis une visibilité inimaginable pour les fondateurs de la revue il y a 50 ans.

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Texte intégral

1To appear for half a century with metronomic regularity is neither banal nor trivial for a biannual journal in the humanities and social sciences. In the previous issue, Pierre Labrousse called the institutional context of Archipel’s beginnings to mind. A journal is also part of a publishing landscape that I think interesting to recall briefly on this occasion by limiting myself however to the journals that enjoyed, at the time Archipel was launched, and still enjoy an international reputation.

2In France, by the late 1960s, the Bulletin de l’École française d’Extrême-Orient (BEFEO, 1901-) published the last studies of two French researchers who were pioneers in the Archipelago in the fields that interest us here: Jeanne Cuisinier, who died in 1964 and Louis-Charles Damais, who died in 1966. The former undertook an ethnographic and linguistic research mission in Kelantan and Pattani in 1932-33, before staying in Indonesia between 1952 and 1955, carrying out fieldwork in Java, Sumatra, and from Bali to Timor, thus opening the way to French ethnological and sociological studies in Indonesia. Louis-Charles Damais stayed in Java for ten years from 1937, years during which he conducted his first researches on Javanese culture and epigraphy. Close to the newly established Indonesian Archaeological Service, he returned to Indonesia in 1952 to establish the permanent representation of the École française d’Extrême-Orient in Jakarta and carried out studies on Indonesian epigraphy, history and culture until the end of his life.

3In the Netherlands, at the end of the 1960s, the articles in the Bijdragen tot de Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde van de Koninklijk Instituut (BKI, 1853-), a journal that specialised from its outset in what was to become Indonesia, were mainly devoted to ethnology, linguistics, philology, and the ancient history of Java. At the time, the BKI published texts by a number of scholars who would later become contributors to Archipel, such as P. Voorhoeve, P.J. Worsley, R. Jones, H. Jacobs, C. Hooykaas, M.C. Ricklefs, L.F. Brakel, G.J. Resink, J. Noorduyn, C. Vreede-De Stuers, B. Dahm, A. Teeuw or R.R. Roolvink. Among them, Russell Jones was the first foreign scholar to be associated with the editorial staff of Archipel, and this as soon as 1976.

4In the United Kingdom, Indonesia Circle was launched at the School of Oriental & African Studies two years after Archipel, becoming Indonesia and the Malay World from 1997.

5In the United States, Indonesia was launched in 1966. Although its title announced a focus on Indonesia in the twentieth century, its first issues included contributions on earlier times. The history of Indonesia itself is in some ways linked to that of Archipel, since James Siegel, one of its founders and former editor-in-chief, has been a member of Archipel’s scientific committee since 1996, and became of course one of its contributors.

6In Southeast Asia, the Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society (Kuala Lumpur, JMBRAS, 1878-), devoted its late 1960s issues mainly to the modern history of Malaysia and Singapore, but also made room for the earlier history of the region, Malay philology, as well as the archaeology of Malaysia. Here again, many of the researchers who later contributed to Archipel are to be found, such as J. Kathirithamby-Wells, Lee Kam Hing, A.C. Milner, L.F. Brakel, A. Reid and B. Colless.

7As for the Journal of Southeast Asian History (Singapore, JSAH, 1960-), which became the Journal of Southeast Asian Studies in 1970, it focused, in the late 1960s, on the modern history of the region, but also published studies on the history of the Archipelago in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Like the BKI and the JMBRAS, the JSAH welcomed a number of future contributors to Archipel, such as A. Reid, J. Kathirithamby-Wells, B. Colless or C.R.  Boxer.

  • 1 An eight-year cycle in the Javanese culture.
  • 2 James Siegel, Luis Filipe Thomaz and Mary Somers Heidhues have been editorial advisors since 1996 ( (...)

8Archipel has already marked twice an anniversary in its issues. An editorial entitled “Satu windu1 ‛Archipel’” appeared in issue no. 16 (1978). Statistics are presented, such as the number of pages printed up to that point (4,000) or the number of contributions by Insulindian authors (59 out of a total of 138 published authors). The twentieth anniversary was marked in 1991 (no. 41). On this occasion, emphasis was placed on the internationalisation of the journal, an effort in which colleagues from Italy and Portugal were quickly contributing, followed by Dutch and Anglo-Saxon scholars, and more recently by Russian researchers, while C.D. Grijns and Luigi Santa Maria joined Russell Jones in 1978 as editorial advisers.2 Archipel reiterated its foothold in the international research landscape, leaving to others the task of “the kind vulgarisation,” on the one hand, and, on the other, promoted a longue durée approach, while striving to go beyond the Indonesian area in order to produce a “sound knowledge of Insulindia.”

A Statistical Review

9My purpose here is no more than to present a series of basic statistics, a particular insight which I hope will be useful for future reflections on the place and role of Archipel in research on the Insulindian world during its first fifty years. A corpus of 100 issues, including twenty-three special issues, as well as the digital tools available, offer multiple possibilities for analysis. However, I have chosen to stick to criteria that are a priori simple to define. However, the concern for objectivity quickly encounters obstacles when it comes to going into any kind of detail.

  • 3 Abstracts appear late in the history of the journal: monolingual from 1997 (no. 53), and bilingual (...)

10As the journal has only slightly changed its format once in 50 years, from 16x21 cm to 16x24cm in 1991 (no. 41), I have retained the page as one of the basic criteria. The page counts do not include the following elements: contents, abstracts,3 miscellaneous announcements, advertisements and blank pages. Once these deductions are made, the total number of pages in the corpus is 24,763, compared to an overall total of some 26,000 pages. Table 1 below shows the evolution of this number of pages published per calendar year, thus grouping two issues. The variation is between 387 and 647 pages, with an annual average of 495 pages. The first 25 years totalled 11,668 pages, i.e. 47 percent of the total, a figure that seems to indicate a balanced distribution. However, looking in detail, the last 25 years show a greater disparity with, in particular, a total of more than 500 pages for the majority of years, whereas only three years exceed this figure during the first period.

Table 1 – Evolution of the number of pages published per calendar year

Table 1 – Evolution of the number of pages published per calendar year

11I have distinguished ten categories in this corpus: research notes and articles, in memoriams, current state of research/projects, presentations of institutions, pages of exotica, literature/accounts, critical notes, book reviews, research in progress/journals/publishing houses/performances, etc., Archipel anniversaries. The total number of texts is 2,186 (Table 2), dominated by research notes and articles (46%) and book reviews (40%).

Table 2 – Categories defined in the Archipel corpus

Table 2 – Categories defined in the Archipel corpus

12The 1,008 research notes and articles represent 20,821 pages, or 84 percent of the total corpus of pages considered here. The first 25 years (1971-95) include 556 texts, i.e. 55 percent, giving a general impression of stability. However, an examination of the annual variation in the number of these research notes and articles shows a trend towards a reduction in the number of texts from the turn of the century onwards (Table 3).

Table 3 – Variation in the number of research notes and articles

Table 3 – Variation in the number of research notes and articles

13For the corpus as a whole, the average is 20 pages per text. This average masks a trend towards longer texts since the late 1990s (Table 4). While only two years show an average of more than 20 pages per text until 1996, this average is systematically superior from 1997 onwards, with two exceptions. Five years even exceed an average of 30 pages in the period 2004-2011. Compared to the trend observed in the previous table, a new format can be observed from the turn of the century, that is fewer but longer texts.

Table 4 – Variation in the average number of pages for research notes and articles

Table 4 – Variation in the average number of pages for research notes and articles

14When aggregated by two successive years (i.e. 4 issues) to smooth out variances, the variation in the total number of pages devoted to research notes and articles ranges from 552 to 1169 pages (Table  5). The average is 744 pages for the period 1971-1996 and reaches 929 pages for the period 1997-2020.

Table 5 – Variation in the total number of pages devoted to research notes and articles

Table 5 – Variation in the total number of pages devoted to research notes and articles

15The authors of the research notes and articles, in memoriams, current state of research/projects, presentations of institutions, pages of exotica, literature/accounts, and critical notes, originate from 33 different nationalities with a total of 1,246 signatures (Table 6). Thirteen nationalities register at least ten signatures. With 665 occurrences, French authors account for 53 percent of these signatures, followed by Indonesian authors with 149 signatures (12%), and Dutch authors with 85 signatures (7%).

Table 6 – Number of signatures according to nationalities

Table 6 – Number of signatures according to nationalities

16Table 7, details the nationalities with fewer than ten signatures, represented by the heading “Other countries” (85 signatures) in the previous table.

Table 7 – Nationalities with a number of signatures below ten

Table 7 – Nationalities with a number of signatures below ten
  • 4 Including 80 translations into French from other languages, mainly Indonesian (62 texts).

17The same corpus of 1,100 research notes and articles, in memoriams, current state of research/projects, presentations of institutions, pages of exotica, literature/accounts, and critical notes, can also be examined from the point of view of the languages used. French dominates with 724  texts,4 that is 66 percent, followed by English with 347 texts (31%) and Indonesian/Malaysian with 26 texts (2%), the other languages (Spanish, Portuguese and German) being represented by one text each. By considering separately the 724 texts in French on the one hand and the 347 texts in English on the other, it is possible to follow the evolution of the contribution of each of both languages, especially if we consider the number of pages published in these two languages (21,142) (Table 8).

Table 8 – Evolution of the texts published in French and English (nb. of pages)

Table 8 – Evolution of the texts published in French and English (nb. of pages)

18It appears that texts in English became the majority in the early 2010s, a development that is all the more evident by reasoning in percentages (Table 9).

Table 9 – Evolution of the proportion of texts published in French and English (nb. of pages)

Table 9 – Evolution of the proportion of texts published in French and English (nb. of pages)

19The current borders are considered to examine this corpus of 1,100 texts from a geographical point of view, with emphasis on the countries of the Austronesian area which form the main framework of the texts or occupy a significant place in them. Thus Thailand, Vietnam, Taiwan, South Africa and Sri Lanka are taken into account only when their Austronesian-speaking minorities constitute the main topic of the article or occupy a significant place in it. Indonesia dominates with 914 of the 1,398 occurrences, i.e. almost two thirds, followed by Malaysia with 190 occurrences, i.e. 14 percent (Table 10).

Table 10 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their geographical frameworks (current countries)

Table 10 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their geographical frameworks (current countries)

20In the texts where neither Indonesia nor Malaysia are considered as a whole (718 occurrences), Java largely dominates with almost half of the total (Table 11).

Table 11– Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their main regional frameworks in Indonesia and Malaysia

Table 11– Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their main regional frameworks in Indonesia and Malaysia

21When the provinces and special territories of Indonesia, as well as the states of Malaysia, are clearly identified (622 occurrences), seventeen area exceed ten occurrences and represent 85 percent of the total (Table 12). The Special Territory of Aceh comes first (60) followed by Jakarta/Batavia (57).

Table 12 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their large administrative geographical frameworks in Indonesia and Malaysia

Table 12 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their large administrative geographical frameworks in Indonesia and Malaysia

22This interest in Aceh is evident from the late 1990s onwards, therefore predating the 2004 tsunami, with the period 1997-1998/2017-2018 accounting for 80 percent of the 60 occurrences (Table 13), a period marked in particular by the special issue on Aceh (2014, no. 87).

Table 13 – Distribution of the occurrences relating to the Special Territory of Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam

Table 13 – Distribution of the occurrences relating to the Special Territory of Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam

23In chronological terms, eleven brackets, including the bracket entitled “Contemporary” starting in 1970 (the year preceding the first issue of Archipel), have been distinguished in order to distribute the 2,719 occurrences. The latter are not based solely on the timelines indicated in the titles, but take into account the content of the texts. The “Contemporary” bracket dominates with one fifth of the occurrences (Table 14). Almost two thirds of the occurrences cover the period from the 19th century to the “Contemporary” bracket.

Table 14 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts in chronological terms

Table 14 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts in chronological terms

24There are 855 book reviews (for a total of 2,221 pages, i.e. an average of 2.6 pages per text and 22.2 pages per issue) divided into 730 texts in French (85%), 149 texts in English and 6 texts in Indonesian. These book reviews are more numerous overall in the first fifty issues (63%). Reviews in English follow the opposite trend, since they have more than doubled over the last 25 years (105 compared to 44). A distribution by five-year brackets shows a wide variation in the number of pages in this category, with an average of 222 pages (Table 15).

Table 15 – Distribution of book reviews (number of pages)

Table 15 – Distribution of book reviews (number of pages)

25It was decided in 2009 to make Archipel available online for free on Persée (https://www.persee.fr/​collection/​arch). This platform hosts issues 1(1971) to 87(2014). Archipel issues from 88(2014) onwards are available for free on the OpenEdition Journals platform (https://journals.openedition.org/​archipel) since 2017. Table 16 shows the increase in consultations since 2014. More than 220,000 downloads have been carried out over the eleven full years of presence on Persée (2010-2020), i.e. an average exceeding 20,000 downloads per year. It is worth noting the relative stability of this figure (19,889 downloads in 2020).

Table 16 – Online consultations: cumulative figures of Persée and OpenEdition Journals platforms

Table 16 – Online consultations: cumulative figures of Persée and OpenEdition Journals platforms

26The editorial published in 1978, at the end of the first windu, focused in particular on the number of contributions by Insulindian authors. In this respect, one of the lessons of the present statistical review is the significant number of Southeast Asian signatures, since they represent 15% of the total. In the editorial published in 1991, the effort to internationalise the journal was highlighted, a trend then considered in terms of the increase in the number of contributions by foreign colleagues. Looking at the first hundred issues, this internationalisation is real, since almost half of the signatures are foreign (32 nationalities). The corollary of this phenomenon is the increasing place taken by English. While more than two thirds of the contributions were in French until 2010, this proportion has been reversed over the last five years. The examination of the corpus has also highlighted the appearance of a new format from the turn of the century, a format reflected through fewer but longer texts. The 1991 editorial also invited to go beyond the Indonesian area. In this respect, the multiplication of journals focusing on limited geographical areas has probably constituted a brake. Lastly, the explosion in the use of computers, digitisation, the Internet and platforms now allows anyone, practically anywhere on the planet, to have free and instant access to the content of Archipel, a potential readership unimaginable for the journal’s founders 50 years ago.

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Notes

1 An eight-year cycle in the Javanese culture.

2 James Siegel, Luis Filipe Thomaz and Mary Somers Heidhues have been editorial advisors since 1996 (no. 51), a group that became part of the editorial board set up in 2003 (no. 66). Arlo Griffiths, Robert W. Hefner and Arndt Graf joined this board later, in 2012 (no. 84), in 2013 (no. 85), and in 2016 (no. 91) respectively.

3 Abstracts appear late in the history of the journal: monolingual from 1997 (no. 53), and bilingual from 2010 (no. 79).

4 Including 80 translations into French from other languages, mainly Indonesian (62 texts).

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Table des illustrations

Titre Table 1 – Evolution of the number of pages published per calendar year
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-1.png
Fichier image/png, 294k
Titre Table 2 – Categories defined in the Archipel corpus
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-2.png
Fichier image/png, 53k
Titre Table 3 – Variation in the number of research notes and articles
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-3.png
Fichier image/png, 46k
Titre Table 4 – Variation in the average number of pages for research notes and articles
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-4.png
Fichier image/png, 42k
Titre Table 5 – Variation in the total number of pages devoted to research notes and articles
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-5.png
Fichier image/png, 30k
Titre Table 6 – Number of signatures according to nationalities
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-6.png
Fichier image/png, 55k
Titre Table 7 – Nationalities with a number of signatures below ten
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-7.png
Fichier image/png, 70k
Titre Table 8 – Evolution of the texts published in French and English (nb. of pages)
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-8.png
Fichier image/png, 41k
Titre Table 9 – Evolution of the proportion of texts published in French and English (nb. of pages)
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-9.png
Fichier image/png, 38k
Titre Table 10 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their geographical frameworks (current countries)
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-10.png
Fichier image/png, 50k
Titre Table 11– Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their main regional frameworks in Indonesia and Malaysia
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-11.png
Fichier image/png, 52k
Titre Table 12 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts according to their large administrative geographical frameworks in Indonesia and Malaysia
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-12.png
Fichier image/png, 76k
Titre Table 13 – Distribution of the occurrences relating to the Special Territory of Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-13.png
Fichier image/png, 28k
Titre Table 14 – Distribution of the occurrences in the texts in chronological terms
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-14.png
Fichier image/png, 48k
Titre Table 15 – Distribution of book reviews (number of pages)
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-15.png
Fichier image/png, 39k
Titre Table 16 – Online consultations: cumulative figures of Persée and OpenEdition Journals platforms
URL http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/docannexe/image/2390/img-16.png
Fichier image/png, 21k
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Daniel Perret, « Fifty Years of the Journal Archipel (1971/1-2020/100): Figures and Trends »Archipel, 101 | 2021, 23-34.

Référence électronique

Daniel Perret, « Fifty Years of the Journal Archipel (1971/1-2020/100): Figures and Trends »Archipel [En ligne], 101 | 2021, mis en ligne le 12 juin 2021, consulté le 12 août 2022. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/archipel/2390 ; DOI : https://doi.org/10.4000/archipel.2390

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Daniel Perret

École française d’Extrême-Orient / French School of Asian Studies, Kuala Lumpur

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