The Kubu (Koeboe, Orang Darat) live in Sumatra and are found throughout the east-coast lowlands westward to the foothills of the Barisan Range. "Kubu" is a generic label used by outsiders for a number of scattered former hunter-gatherers in Sumatra. Kubu groups themselves prefer to be called "Orang Darat" (people of the land) or by the name of a local ethnic group. Named Kubu groups are the Mamk, Sakai, Akit, Talang, Tapung, Orang Utan, Orang Rawas, Lubu, Ulu, Rawas, Duwablas, Mountain Kubus, and Benua. In 1935, the population was approximately 25,000, and the number is probably considerably lower today. The settled Kubu are Muslims, although some traditional beliefs and practices survive. The Kubu use the language of the dominant group with which they associate, such as Riau or Djambi Malay, Minangkabau or Mandailing Batak. The Kubu now often live near Malay villages where they subsist as farmers. The traditional hunter-gatherer way of life is largely a thing of the past.


Keereweer, H. H. (1940). "De Koeboes in de Onderafdeeling Moesi Kir en Koeboestreken." Bijdragen tot de Taal-, Landen Volkenkunde 99:357-396.

LeBar, Frank M. (1972). "Kubu." In Ethnic Groups of Insular Southeast Asia, edited by Frank M. LeBar. Vol. 1, Indonesia, Andaman Islands, and Madagascar, 46-47. New Haven: HRAF Press.

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