What Media Says

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

May 20, 2006 / Jakarta Post
on Pramoedya Ananta Toer

Pramoedya and the rebirth of national culture

It was an amazing experience to translate the works of Pramoedya Ananta Toer, to have had to think deeply about what he wrote, to discuss with him the situation in Indonesia. I translated This Earth of Mankind, Child of All Nations, Footsteps and House of Glass in the 1980s. Recently I have just finished translating his The Chinese in Indonesia and Arok Dedes, both of which will be published this year. I am in the process of completing my own book, People Power, the Fall of Suharto and Indonesian History which is partly inspired by his analysis of Indonesian history.
May 16, 2006 / The Sydney Morning Herald
on Pramoedya Ananta Toer

Man of letters and revolution

IN THE days before Indonesia's greatest novelist, Pramoedya Ananta Toer, died, text messages and emails had warned that he was seriously ill. Many readers gathered at his hospital bed and later his home where they sang songs of struggle or prayed.
May 10, 2006 / Green Left Weekly
on Pramoedya Ananta Toer

Pramoedya Ananta Toer: Indonesia’s greatest novelist

Scores of activists and young writers, as well as family members, were at the Karet Bivak cemetery in central Jakarta on April 30. Many were crying, tearful. The loss was felt greatly, a burden. But they rallied their spirits to also sing songs of struggle to farewell the man who they had just laid to rest: Pramoedya Ananta Toer. They sang the Internationale and they sang that most moving of all songs that grew up during the struggle against the 1966-98 Suharto military dictatorship: Darah joang ("Blood of the struggle").
Apr 30, 2006 / The Sydney Morning Herald
on Pramoedya Ananta Toer

Indonesian author Pramoedya Ananta Toer dies

Indonesia’s best-known author, Pramoedya Ananta Toer, died today, the family said. Pramoedya, known for his anti-colonial novels and long history of persecution by past regimes, had been suffering respiratory problems and chest pains in recent ...
Apr 30, 2006 / The New York Times
on Pramoedya Ananta Toer

Obituary: Renowned Indonesian author Pramoedya Ananta Toer dies

Indonesian author Pramoedya Ananta Toer, an outspoken democracy advocate who overcame imprisonment and censorship to publish dozens of stories and novels about his country, died Sunday. He was 81. Pramoedya “dedicated his whole life to ...
Apr 13, 2006 / Qantara
on Agus R Sarjono

Martin Jankowski and Agus R. Sarjono: Cross-Cultural Synergies

The poets Martin Jankowski und Agus R. Sarjono come from two utterly different worlds. By giving public readings together in Germany and Indonesia, they hope to provide each other the opportunity to reach new audiences. ...
Apr 02, 2006 / Jakarta Post
on Dee Lestari

Dewi ‘Dee’ Lestari: Love, spirituality and ecology

Ask author and singer Dewi Lestari to discuss spirituality and she will explain to you with equal enthusiasm the values of Christianity, Buddhism and Kabbalah. “”It is spirituality that drives me to work and it ...
Sep 16, 2005 / Jakarta Post
on Budi Darma

Polite teacher views human absurdity

After sinking themselves in the dark, absurd and insane world of Budi Darma's novel Olenka and short-story collection Orang-orang Bloomington, some readers made the trip to meet the author in person. They all returned with the same news: Budi Darma is -- to an almost disappointing level -- a polite man. Wearing thick glasses and dressed conservatively, he speaks with the reserve and polite manner of an old-fashioned teacher of morals. The person who wrote about wild sex on a table and insane thoughts of an alienated man who wanted to yank the arms of two poor children from their joints said he appeared that way because before he was essentially a teacher. Budi Darma, 68, has lectured for decades at the English Department of the State University of Surabaya (Unesa, formerly IKIP Surabaya), where he once was the rector in the 1980s.
Sep 04, 2005 / Jakarta Post
on Sapardi Djoko Damono

Sapardi’s words pull in new generations

Veteran poet Sapardi Djoko Damono is as cool right now as he was 10, 20 and 30 years ago. Earlier this month on the night of the launch of his latest book, Before Dawn, the young and sexy actress, Cornelia Agatha, asked if she could pose with him for a picture. But the starlet, who usually has throngs of fans wanting to stand next to her, had to wait her turn -- Sapardi had a long line of well-wishers.
Apr 20, 2005 / Green Left Weekly
on Joesoef Isak

Joesoef Isak wins PEN Australia award

Indonesian left-wing publisher Joesoef Isak attended the Third Asia Pacific International Solidarity Conference (APISC) in Sydney over the Easter weekend. In addition to speaking at a workshop on "Marxism in Indonesia after 1965" and on plenary panel on the current political situation in Indonesia, Isak also gave short greetings to the conference on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Asia-Africa Conference held in Bandung, Indonesia in 1955 — the conference that spawned the Non-Aligned Movement. Isak was the secretary-general of the Asia Africa Journalists Association from 1962 until 1965 when General Suharto seized power. Isak was detained in 1967 and imprisoned without trial until 1977.