What Media Says

Indonesian writers as seen on English/foreign-language media. See also Media Clippings.

Aug 12, 2022 / Antara
on Ajip Rosidi

Jokowi bestows honorary medals as part of Independence Day celebration

President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) bestowed honorary medals on hundreds of Indonesians for their distinguished services during a ceremony organized as part of the commemoration of the 77th Anniversary of the Republic of Indonesia. The award ceremony was held at the State Palace, here on Friday, and attended by several recipients, who also represented hundreds of other recipients. Those present included few recipients and heirs of other recipients, who had passed away.
Jul 07, 2022 / Courier
on Eka Kurniawan

Eka Kurniawan: “It would be great to live around people who read literature from across the world”

Since the publication of his first novel Beauty Is a Wound in 2002, Indonesian writer Eka Kurniawan has made himself a name internationally. Drawing on the myths and beliefs of his country while combining earthliness and poetry, magic and realism, his short stories have been translated into more than thirty languages.
Jun 22, 2022 / Iowa IWP
on Felix K. Nesi

On The Map 2022: Interview with Felix K. Nesi, Indonesia

Felix K. NESI (fiction writer, activist; Indonesia) is the author of Orang-Orang Oetimu [People of Oetimu], which won the 2018 Jakarta Arts Council Novel Competition, and, in 2016, the story collection Usaha Membunuh Sepi [Effort to Kill the Quiet]. With the support of the Indonesian National Book Committee, he has researched Timorese slavery in the Netherlands. He is also the founder of a street bookstore, a library, and the book festival Kencan Buku Fesek, all in West Timor. His participation is made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.   "On the Map" is a series of interviews with writers while they are in Iowa City participating in the International Writing Program's fall residency. The series is produced by the IWP at the University of Iowa and is made possible by a grant from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. For additional private support, see final credits.
May 26, 2022 / Liminal Magazine
on Norman Erikson Pasaribu Tiffany Tsao

5 Questions with Norman Erikson Pasaribu and Tiffany Tsao

Norman and Tiffany, you’ve had an ongoing collaborative friendship for some years now. In 2019, Norman’s first poetry collection, Sergius Seeks Bacchus (Sergius Mencari Bacchus) was translated from Bahasa Indonesia to English by Tiffany, as well as individual short stories (‘Deep Brown, Verging on Black’) in The White Review. Can you tell us how this relationship began? How has it evolved through the years? TT: We met online! I saw the poetry that Norman had posted and thought, oh cool! At the time I was volunteering for the literary journal Asymptote and was looking for Indonesian writing to suggest to the section editors. I asked Norman if they had a translator yet, and if not, if they’d be interested in working with me to translate some samples. NEP: What Tiff said! It’s really not a story of an author and a translator meeting in a bar. I think our relationship has so evolved that our friendship, our sisterhood, is much larger than our working relationship. I consider Tiff my family.
May 25, 2022 / Personal Blog
on Agustinus Wibowo

Talking with Agustinus Wibowo: Syncretic Indonesia

Agustinus Wibowo is a young Indonesian intellectual who ranges from writing, with highly successful books, to travel photography. In his travels, he has crossed the Himalayas, South Asia, Afghanistan (where he lived for three years), Iran, and the former Soviet republics of Central Asia. Agustinus is fluent in Indonesian, English, and Mandarin Chinese; he learned Russian, Japanese, German and French academically; and he also self-taught many languages including Urdu, Farsi, Tajik, Kyrgyz, Kazakh, Uzbek, Mongolian, Turkish, and Tok Pisin. One of his favorite topics is the religious syncretic tradition of Indonesia, which is one of the topics that fascinates me, not just related to Indonesia. But given that very little is yet known about the archipelago of 17,000 islands, it seems like a good opportunity to have a chat with Agustinus.
May 22, 2022 / South China Morning Post
on Marga T

Indonesian-Chinese writer Marga T on guilt of having been born a girl: ‘it gave me cancer’

In her latest and most personal work, the celebrated author ‘cleanses’ her soul as she opens up on her traumatic childhood, her mother’s death, and dealing with abuse The 79-year-old also reflects on her long career as an ethnic Chinese writer whose success came despite oppression against the community by ex-dictator Suharto, in this rare interview with This Week in Asia
May 06, 2022 / Zócalo Public Square
on Cynthia Dewi Oka

An Interview with May Curator Cynthia Dewi Oka

Cynthia Dewi Oka is the May poetry curator for Zócalo. The Indonesian-born poet, community organizer, and teacher is the author of four poetry collections, including the forthcoming A Tinderbox in Three Acts. Currently, she is a Poet in Residence at the Amy Clampitt House in Lenox, Massachusetts. We caught up with Oka in Zócalo’s green room to chat about Sailor Moon, her most memorable poetry performance, and “going on airplane mode.”
Apr 10, 2022 / Jakarta Post
on Richard Oh

Film and literary figures pay tribute to director Richard Oh

Richard Oh, who passed away on Thursday, was a giant in both literature and film. We ask some of the country’s top stars and literary figures to remember his towering legacy. Acclaimed writer, director and actor Richard Oh passed away on April 7. He left behind a towering legacy in Indonesia’s literary and film scene. In literature, he was the driving force behind the influential bookstore QB World Books, creative hub Reading Room and co-founder of the Khatulistiwa Literary Awards -- arguably the country’s most prestigious literary prize. In film, he directed and starred in acclaimed movies like Koper and Melancholy is a Movement, and was a mentor for many of the country’s top filmmakers working today. A tour-de-force and inspiration for many, his passing leaves a gaping hole in the country’s artistic world. We asked some of his closest friends -- and acclaimed writers and directors -- to speak about his life, and reminisce on his lasting legacy.
Apr 08, 2022 / Jakarta Post
on Richard Oh

Author and filmmaker Richard Oh passes away at 62

Prominent Indonesian filmmaker and literary figure Richard Oh passed away at the age of 62 on Thursday at 7.30 p.m. in Eka Hospital BSD, South Tangerang. "Innalillahi wainnaillaihi rajiun [We belong to God and to God we shall return]. Our brother and friend Abdurrahman bin Yong Masio (Richard Oh) has passed away and returned to Allah SWT," the message from his family read, as quoted by kompas.com. Richard will reportedly be buried in Banjarmasin, South Kalimantan, on Friday.
Apr 08, 2022 / Coconuts
on Richard Oh

Indonesian filmmaker, literary icon Richard Oh passes away at 62

Richard Oh, an Indonesian director, actor, writer, and literary figure, passed away yesterday evening. He was 62 years old. The news of Richard’s death was confirmed by his family through a short message as well as a number of his close friends including director Joko Anwar on social media since last night. His passing came as a shock as he was just posting a video on his Instagram just hours before. “Our best friend, our kokoh (older brother) Richard Oh, has left us on Thursday, April 7, 7:30pm. Kokoh, you are greatly missed,” Joko wrote in a tweet.