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Year of Living Dangerously Gerwani Militia Woman in Mao Cap 10 Sen Indonesia Authentic Banknote (Sukarno) 1964 (Vivere Pericoloso) Feminist

Year of Living Dangerously Gerwani Militia Woman in Mao Cap 10 Sen Indonesia Authentic Banknote (Sukarno) 1964 (Vivere Pericoloso) Feminist

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I'm Cheaper by the Dozen

Year of Living Dangerously Gerwani Militia Woman in Mao Cap 10 Sen Indonesia Authentic Banknote Money for Collage (1964) (Sukarno) (Vivere Pericoloso) (Fifth Force) (Indonesian Women’s Movement) (Feminism) (Bung Karno) (Jakarta Method)

Obverse: Fifth Force Gerwani Woman "Volunteer" in Mao Cap and militia uniform.
Lettering: BANK INDONESIA 10
SUKARELAWAN (on shoulder patch)
Translation: BANK INDONESIA 10
VOLUNTEER (on shoulder patch)
State printers Pertjetakan Kebajoran (a.k.a. Perkeba)
[Note that the year on the banknote, "1964" is not a reference to the date when the banknote was issued. The official release date for the banknote was December 13, 1965. Rather "1964" refers to the "Year of Living Dangerously", proclaimed by President Sukarno on August 17, 1964.]

Reverse: Guilloché Geometric design
Lettering: Barangsiapa meniru atau memalsukan uang kertas dan barangsiapa mengeluarkan dengan sengadja
atau menjimpan uang kertas jang dipalsukan akandituntut dimuka hakim
Translation: Whoever imitates or falsifies banknotes and whoever releases them accidentally
or keeping falsified banknotes will be prosecuted before the judge

Issuer Indonesia
Period Republic (1950-date)
Type Standard banknote
Year 1965
Value 10 Sen (0.10 IDR)
Currency Rupiah (1965-date)
Composition Paper
Size 103 × 52 mm
Shape Rectangular
Demonetized 15 November 1996
Number N# 203843
References P# 92

[Watch President Sukarno's bass-playing grandson Prananda Prabowo and his heavy metal rock band, Rodinda, perform their history-influenced song "Vivere Pericoloso". (Prananda Prabowo is also the son of past president Megawati Sukarnoputri.) ]

The hyperinflation of the early 1960s resulted in the pronouncement of the 'new rupiah' supposedly worth 1,000 of the old rupiah. The withdrawal of the old money meant the issue of an entirely new set of banknotes, by Presidential Decree of 13 December 1965. The decree authorised Bank Indonesia to issue fractional notes for the first time ... in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25, and 50 sen showing 'Volunteer'.


1965–1991: the 1000 to 1 revaluation of the rupiah
Rampant inflation, which was 27% in 1961, but jumped to 174% in 1962, by 1965 was 600%, had seen the largest denomination banknote increase 100-fold, from 100 rupiah in September 1959, to 1000 rupiah in May 1960, to 5,000 in October 1963 and finally 10,000 rupiah in August 1964. As a result, during the Indonesian political turmoil of 1965, the 'new rupiah' was introduced on 13 December 1965, at a rate of 1000 of the old unit. The price index at the end of 1965 had been calculated at 363 times higher than in 1958, and prices had risen approximately seven times over the previous 12 months. In real terms (i.e. with inflation taken into account), a labourer in Jakarta was estimated to have earned 40 per cent of his earnings in 1958. Although the devaluation in notes was 1,000 to 1, prices were reckoned to fall by only 10 times.

...Denominations of the new rupiah ranged from 1 sen (worthless even at issue) up to 100 rupiah, with 500 and 1000 rupiah added soon after.


...Before 1965 Sukarno used the comparatively radical women's group Gerwani to propagate his ideas among the masses of Indonesian women. Although Gerwani did not support Sukarno's policies automatically, it would convey those it agreed with to the masses since it wanted to prove that Indonesian women were militant and brave and just as ready as men to support the Indonesian revolution.


The Gerwani was a large mass movement and thus had considerable impact in the realm of sexual politics. It had fought for greater social equality for women, notably campaigning for a "democratic marriage law" which would outlaw polygamy and remove the ease with which Muslim men could obtain a divorce. It had also urged heavier penalties for rape and abduction. ....By today's standards the Gerwani was not a particularly militant or effective exponent of women's interests. Ironically this was largely due to the PKI's [Communist Party Indonesia] influence which sharply curtailed Gerwani’s ability to campaign for reforms which conflicted with the party's short term political interests. Particularly pertinent here was the party’s cosy relationship with Sukarno whose ostentatious polygamy undermined Gerwani’s long-standing campaign on this issue.


Vivere pericoloso [ˈviːvere perikoˈloːzo] ... is a phrase in the Italian language, which means "to live dangerously". Usually, the phrase is used for dangerous things, such as people living in dangerous areas because of disaster... In Indonesia, this phrase was popularized by Indonesia's first president Sukarno in 1964 when his state address on the 19th anniversary of the nation's independence was entitled Tahun Vivere Pericoloso (The Year of Living Dangerously, abbreviated as TAVIP), roughly a year before the coup attempt by the 30 September Movement.

The title of the address inspired Christopher Koch, an Australian author, to write a novel published in 1978 titled The Year of Living Dangerously, which was then made into a film with the same title. The 1982 film starring Mel Gibson, Sigourney Weaver and Linda Hunt tells the story of the events in Jakarta before and after the 30 September Movement launched its action.


"The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution ... gave [President] Johnson the authority to start a full war in Vietnam. Three days later, Sukarno defiantly established relations with Ho Chi Minh's government in the northern half of Vietnam. ... On August 17 [1964], Sukarno gave another fiery speech, and declared a "year of living dangerously". He spoke of a "Jakarta-Phnom Penh-Hanoi-Peking-Pyongyang axis...forged by the course of history". ... A few months later, in angry retaliation for Malaysia's accession to the UN Security Council, Sukarno decided to pull Indonesia out of the UN in protest."

From "The Jakarta Method", Vincent Bevins (Public Affairs Books, 2020) Page 123.


By 1965 Indonesia had become a dangerous cockpit of social and political antagonisms. The PKI's rapid growth aroused the hostility of Islamic groups and the military. The ABRI-PKI balancing act, which supported Sukarno's Guided Democracy regime, was going awry. One of the most serious points of contention was the PKI's desire to establish a "fifth force" of armed peasants and workers in conjunction with the four branches of the regular armed forces. Many officers were bitterly hostile, especially after Chinese premier Zhou Enlai offered to supply the "fifth force" with arms. By 1965 ABRI's highest ranks were divided into factions supporting Sukarno and the PKI and those opposed, the latter including ABRI chief of staff Nasution and Major General Suharto, commander of Kostrad. Sukarno's collapse at a speech and rumors that he was dying also added to the atmosphere of instability.


Gerwani's affiliation with the PKI eventually led to their demise after the events of Gerakan 30 September (G30S, 30 September Movement) and the “attempted” coup. The arrest and imprisonment of Gerwani members was justified by the fabricated involvement of Gerwani in the killings of the six Generals during G30S. The Lubang Buaya myth, as described as discussed by historians, claimed that Gerwani had performed sadistic, sexual crimes before and after killing the six Generals during G30S. More seriously, Lubang Buaya was used to justify the mass killings of communists in the period immediately after the G30S – an incident that also led to the demise of Gerwani. The memorialization of the Lubang Buaya myth continues to be represented in the Monument of the Sacred Pancasila at the Lubang Buaya site today.


Declassified documents reveal how in 1965 a shadowy dirty tricks arm of the [British] Foreign Office incited anti-communist massacres that left hundreds of thousands dead

...A revealing memorandum, dated 30 October 1965, from Reddaway to Brian Tovey, later director of GCHQ, then on posting to Singapore, highlighted the contribution which Sigint could make. Reddaway told his colleague the GCHQ material can “help the generals to persecute the PKI more effectively”.

The newsletters remained the core work of Ed Wynne and his colleagues in Winchester Road. A key theme was to encourage their influential readers to support the army’s campaign against the communists. They urged Indonesian patriots: “The PKI and all it stands for must be eliminated for all time.”

We now know that to do that they included sensationalised lies. On 5 November the pro-military Jakarta Daily Mail claimed that on the day of the Untung coup 100 women from PKI’s Gerwani women’s organisation had tortured one of the generals using razor blades and knives to slash his genitals before he was shot.

The story of the torture and mutilation of the generals by the Gerwani women became part of the founding myth of Suharto’s regime, used to justify the destruction of the PKI. It was also, according to Roosa, a pretext for murder. A lie propagated by the Indonesian army, regurgitated and repurposed to incite IRD’s influential readers.

The army’s propaganda story was recycled back into Indonesia in January 1966 in Newsletter 23 with a report on allegations made by two PKI members interrogated by the army. One linked Sukarno’s foreign minister Subandrio to the construction of a “torture room” for the use of PKI prisoners, the other, referencing the Jakarta Daily Mail, a member of the PKI’s women’s organisation, the Gerwani, “one of those ‘honoured’ with the task of mutilating the generals”.

The 15-year-old girl was reported to have said, “Our platoon leader ordered us to beat the prisoner and then cut his private parts with the small knives.”

Tari Lang, Carmel Budiardjo’s daughter, was also 15 at the time. “These newsletters are horrendous. If you hadn’t told me who had written them I would have thought it was Indonesians. It is quite unbelievable that they did this. “There were Gerwani women in my mother’s social circle and they were like members of the Women’s Institute. Very gentle.”

The IRD was deliberately silent on the massacres. One document from December 1965 says they should “do nothing to embarrass the generals” and the newsletter carefully itemises accounts of isolated incidents of PKI brutality but makes no explicit mention of the army’s killings.

In fact the policy went further. In Seamu’s report for 1965 Wynne wrote that they’d used the newsletter for “continued attacks on the guilty men … and indirect support for the clean up and control by the generals”. The generals, Wynne noted, “we treat gently”.

By early 1966 the mass murders in Indonesia, if not their scale, were well known.

In January Robert F Kennedy compared the massacres to “inhuman slaughters perpetrated by the Nazis and the communists” and asked when people would “speak out … against the inhuman slaughter in Indonesia, where over 100,000 alleged communists have not been perpetrators, but victims?”

By February, dismissing the idea of “advertising the blood-bath” as reducing the chances of “getting a new management in Indonesia”, Reddaway observed, “I am delighted that a good number of communists have been disposed of, but their killers are predominantly military and Muslim.”

By March 1966 the murderous campaign against the PKI that resulted in more than half a million deaths was largely over. On 11 March, President Sukarno was forced to hand over power to Gen Suharto, and the end of Confrontation was in sight.
On 14 March, Reddaway wrote to Gilchrist: “I cannot see how in the short term things could have gone any better during the last 10 days.

“I know that the Indonesians under their new management are not going to be easy bedfellows, but I cannot avoid a little (unattributable) Te Deum over the change in the situation between 29 September and 12 March,” he wrote.

Wynne regarded the operation as a success. In his 1966 annual report he proudly says his operation was “fairly successful” because all his enemies (Konfrontasi, Sukarno, Subandrio and the PKI) were “destroyed”. His memory of these tragic events was one of “excitements”.

According to Prof Scott Lucas of the University of Birmingham, the declassified documents show that: “Britain was prepared to engage in dirty deeds which ran contrary to its purported values.” They reveal, he says, “how important black propaganda was to give the illusion that Britain could wield global power – even if many people might be killed for that illusion”.


Guilloché (/ɡɪˈloʊʃ/; or guilloche) is a decorative technique in which a very precise, intricate and repetitive pattern is mechanically engraved into an underlying material via engine turning, which uses a machine of the same name, also called a rose engine lathe. This mechanical technique improved on more time-consuming designs achieved by hand and allowed for greater delicacy, precision, and closeness of line, as well as greater speed.

The term guilloche is also used more generally for repetitive architectural patterns of intersecting or overlapping spirals or other shapes, as used in the Ancient Near East, classical Greece and Rome and neo-classical architecture, and Early Medieval interlace decoration in Anglo-Saxon art and elsewhere. Medieval Cosmatesque stone inlay designs with two ribbons winding around a series of regular central points are very often called guilloche. These central points are often blank, but may contain a figure, such as a rose. These senses are a back-formation from the engraving guilloché, so called because the architectural motifs resemble the designs produced by later guilloché techniques.

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