The Mute’s Soliloquy: A Memoir

Book / Autobiographical


by Pramoedya Ananta Toer (1925-2006)
Author: Willem Samuels

Format: Paperback,
400 page(s)
ISBN/ISBN13: 0140289046/9780140289046
Published Apr 01, 2000 by Penguin Books

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In 1965, Pramoedya Ananta Toer was detained by Indonesian authorities and eventually exiled to the penal island of Buru. Without a formal accusation or trial, the onetime national hero was imprisoned on Buru for eleven years. He survived under brutal conditions, somehow managing to produce his masterwork, the four novels of the Buru Quartet, as well as the remarkable journal entries, essays, and Letters that comprise this moving memoir.Reminiscent of the work of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Mute’s Soliloquy is a harrowing portrait of a penal colony and a heartbreaking remembrance of life before it. With a resonance far beyond its particular time and place, it is Pramoedya’s crowning achievement — a passionate tribute to the freedom of the mind and a celebration of the human spirit.



Though fragmentary, it is a powerful and moving book.
Maggie Helwig in Pramoedya Ananta Toer (Translation by Willem Samuels), ‘The Mute’s Soliloquy’ (Peace News, Dec 01, 2001)