DIGITAL DOCUMENTATION TO CONSERVE ORAL TRADITION IN INDONESIA, THE CASE OF TARUNG INDIGENOUS VILLAGE IN INDONESIA AFTER THE WILDFIRE
This article examines the efforts to conserve the oral tradition-based cultural heritage of Tarung Village, an indigenous community in Indonesia. The case of Tarung village emphasizes the urgency in preserving such tradition, in a wake of a wildfire in 2017 which blazed throughout the village. Despite the rebuilding process of the village being finished in 2020, several problems remain unresolved.
The objective of this article is to show the importance of digital documentation to conserve the oral tradition-based cultural heritage for legal purpose. The legal purpose is to provide a defensive protection mechanism by setting up an official digital documentation of the heritage, even when the general legal system is a written law system, exemplified by the heritage in Tarung Village vis-à-vis with the civil law system in Indonesia.
Using qualitative data collected from field research between 2017 and 2020, this article exhibits an explanatory method to describe the Marapu spiritual belief of Sumba and how its local wisdom inspired the Tarung villagers to cope with the disaster. Marapu values manifest through many aspects of the Tarung villagers' lives, including the landscape, the construction of traditional houses, megalithic tombstones, rituals, and the resilience of Tarung villagers to rebuild their village after the wildfire. Legal complexities appeared in the conservation efforts.
Research results in this article show the importance of the Marapu oral tradition to maintain the social cohesion of Tarung villagers. Thus, this tradition should also be properly conserved in conjuction with conserving the tangible cultural heritage of the village by conducting digital documentation. In this regard, the Indonesian Government must boost conservation efforts to defend the rights of indigenous communities subsisted in their heritage by making the digital documentation official.