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Secondary-level Islamic education system in Southeast Asia offering training in Islamic subjects. Historically, scholars provided education, gave advice to villagers, and legitimized local ceremonies. Villagers supported the schools with food and labor, supplemented in some places with a poor tax, alms, and pious endowments. Fees were seldom charged for learning. Contemporary Indonesian Muslim intellectuals have lauded the anti-Dutch stance of pesantren scholars, seeing them as preservers of Indonesian and Islamic values during the colonial period. In the twentieth century, pesantren is waning as an educational choice as Muslims feel increasingly compelled to send their children to modern government schools.

Subjects: Islam.

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