Eka Kurniawan Talks ‘Cantik Itu Luka’ and His Favorite Books About Indonesia

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About Eka Kurniawan,
Written by Dhania Putri Sarahtika, and was originally published in Jakarta Globe,
Sep 07, 2018


Eka Kurniawan’s critically acclaimed “Cantik Itu Luka,” or “Beauty Is a Wound,” was first published in 2002, but it took off internationally only after it was released by the prestigious publisher New Directions in the US – home of Roberto Bolaño, César Aira and Jorge Luis Borges among others – in 2015. The novel was one of The New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of 2015 and has now been translated to more than 30 languages. Eka is now hailed as the natural successor to Pramoedya Ananta Toer, for a long time since the early 1980s the only Indonesian author of international renown.

Pramoedya’s four-novel epic “Buru Quartet” is considered by many critics and readers to be the finest historical work about Indonesia. Can the same be said about Cantik Itu Luka? Did Eka intend the sprawling novel to also be an epic about Indonesia?

Read the full article here.