Book Stories


Brook Emery reviews Motherlode and Not A Muse

Jan 01, 2011 / Not a Muse, The Inner Lives of Women
In a preface, ‘On Reading Woman’, the Indonesian poet Laksmi Pamuntjak tackles possible objections to the anthology even more directly. Her answers to the last two questions are unequivocal: ‘yes’, then ‘no’. They rest. in part, on an undeniable political truth: ‘ in many parts of the world where women have no voice, no discourse, no place from which to speak, defining the ‘feminine’ is a luxury that cannot be corralled into the collective’. Really, neither book needs an apology or a theoretical feminist defence. The impregnable defence of both anthologies is just that they are artful, interesting explorations of human experience. Each one demonstrates the power of good poetry to engage people on emotional and conceptual levels not easily accessed by other means. How much more powerful, subtle and informing these poems are than shelves full of theory, therapy or self-help.

Review: Modern family

Dec 17, 2010 / 9 dari Nadira
What makes Leila S. Chudori’s 9 dari Nadira such an enjoyable read and an excellent piece of literature? This novel stands out because it touches upon a wide range of emotions and aspects of the ...

A Thrill Ride to Afghanistan

Jun 27, 2010 / Selimut Debu
Several years ago, a man dreamed of traveling to Afghanistan to see what was behind the dust — the seemingly endless war, the grenades, the refugees, the Taliban. In his dream, he saw two gigantic ...

Unveiling Sexuality and social insanity

Apr 11, 2010 / Entrok
There was a time when this country had an authoritarian leader who knew nothing but the accumulation of wealth and power to maintain control over society. He used military and civilian personnel to intimidate the people ...

Gerhana Kembar, a novel by Clara Ng

Nov 27, 2008 / Gerhana Kembar
Lendy, book editor on big publishing house got bit surprise when she found old manuscript and letters in her grandmother’s cupboard. Now, her grandmother’s is dying because of cancer in hospital. Lendy read the story ...

Theme level issues in novel Saman masterpiece Ayu Utami and novel Nayla masterpiece Djenar Maesa Ayu

Jan 01, 2008 / Saman Saman: A Novel
Problem or theme which is lifted in novel Saman masterpiece Ayu Utami and novel Nayla masterpiece Djenar Maesa Ayu make polemic from some opinion. However novel Saman masterpiece Ayu Utami and novel Nayla masterpiece Djenar ...

Criticism on Saman by Ayu Utami

Apr 01, 2007 / Saman Saman: A Novel
Saman, written by Ayu Utami, a book that was controversial in Indonesia, however not so much so in North America, was trying to liberate women from social oppression. I, however, don’t think that the book ...

Descriptions of Female Sexuality in Ayu Utami’s Saman

Jan 05, 2007 / Saman Saman: A Novel
Ayu Utami’s Saman, published in May 1998, describes female sexuality openly, a factor which has caused some controversy in Indonesia. Several critics have applauded the explicit descriptions of sexuality in this novel, claiming they are ...

Leader of the flak

Mar 05, 2006 / Saman: A Novel
NEARLY EIGHT YEARS since Saman was published in Indonesia, taking the book world there by storm, Ayu Utami has seen immense changes in her life. Once an unknown journalist, her debut novel has sold more than 150,000 copies and been reprinted 34 times in its original language. Saman is now a cause celebre - and its outspoken 37-year-old author is sought after by an Indonesian media hungry for her frank commentary.

All That Is Gone by Pramoedya Ananta Toer, trans Willem Samuels

Dec 31, 2004 / All That Is Gone
The first volume of the Indonesian writer Pramoedya Ananta Toer's epic quartet of novels set in the Dutch East Indies in the early 20th century, This Earth of Mankind, appeared in an English translation in 1982. It was followed two years later by Child of All Nations. The narrator, Minke, an aspiring writer and budding nationalist, tells of love, work and disappointment in the contrasting milieux of Javanese tradition and Dutch colonial hegemony, with a warmth and intimacy that seem to derive from personal experience.
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