Literature in Indonesia: A land without readers

Media Clippings

This article mentions Ayu Utami Goenawan Mohamad Laksmi Pamuntjak Leila S. Chudori Pramoedya Ananta Toer
Written by Monika Griebeler
Originally published in Qantara.
May 29, 2015

Indonesia is guest of honour at this autumn’s Frankfurt Book Fair. That’s a remarkable situation, because readers make up only a tiny proportion of the country’s 250 million people.

Good stories, that’s what Indonesians love. Chatting with the neighbours, fairy tales put on at puppet theatres, or the popular recitation competitions – there’s always plenty of telling and acting, talking and rhyming going on. Poetry readings often attract hundreds of people, the poets performing their pieces with much pathos and gesturing. Bands set verses to music, melancholy, mystic, magical. Some stories are passed down over centuries.

Read the full article here.