Indigenous Spirits and Global Aspirations in a Southeast Asian Borderland

Timor-Leste’s Oecussi Enclave

By Michael Rose

July 2020

Image of book coverOver the past 40 years, life in Timor-Leste has changed radically. Before 1975 most of the population lived in highland villages, spoke local languages, and rarely used money. Today many have moved to peri-urban lowland settlements, and even those whose lives remain dominated by customary ways understand that those of their children will not. For the Atoni Pah Meto of Timor-Leste’s remote Oecussi Enclave, the world was neatly divided into two distinct categories: the meto (indigenous), and the kase (foreign). Now matters are less clear. We are sharing the open-access version of Michael Rose’s book here for researchers as part of the Amsterdam University Press green access scheme.

Use the link above to download the open-access version of this book or purchase it from Amsterdam University Press.


Rose, M. 2020, Indigenous Spirits and Global Aspirations in a Southeast Asian Borderland: Timor-Leste’s Oecussi Enclave, Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam.

Karen Downing

Karen Downing is Research Communications Coordinator at the Development Policy Centre.