THE STRUCTURE OF BALINESE SOCIETY
independence government has no longer been in the hands of the kings.
Each village has its own local government called the banjar, which
assists the government of the Republic of Indonesia in dealing with
the needs of the village such as marriages, religious ceremonies,
cremation ceremonies, taking care of temples, irrigation, and so
banjar is operated by a set of strict rules. A married man must
obey the rules of the banjar and if he breaks them he will be punished
severely; he will be boycotted, and if the
violation is very serious he will be declared dead. The head of'
the banjar is called the klian banjar. He is elected by the members
of the, banjar and if he proves to be unsatisfactory, he can be
discharged. A klian banjar is unsalaried.
A banjar has collective properties such as- a rice-field, a bank,
and the bale banjar, The latter is the village meeting-place which
has a kitchen and household utensils which can be lent to each member
of the banjar. The banjar also has an art association, called seka
gong (sekaha gong) consisting of a gamelan and a dancing group completely
equiped with costumes.
important part of the village organization is the subak, a collective
water system. A subak is a collection of rice-field which receive
their water from the same main canal. There are subaks consisting
of dozens of hectares; in some, there are even a hundred hectares.
Eighty percent of the rice-fields in Bali use the subak system,
the head of which is called the klian subak.
quality of mutual assistance Js inherent in such a social structure,
and this kind of life makes for peace and tranquillity which may
be the reason why many people say that Bali is a "paradise