Works (Originally in English)

A collection of works originally published in English.

Aug 01, 2017

Mobile Libraries in the Furthest Corners of Indonesia

by Erni Aladjai
Most public libraries in Indonesia aren’t mobile libraries, but are housed in buildings. However, this kind of library only has a limited reach due to Indonesia’s geographical location and the fact that the country consists of thousands of islands. Moreover, not all Indonesians feel comfortable visiting a public library in a building. Mobile Libraries are an effort to reach out to more people, specifically to communities in regions with limited access to transportation and information.
May 19, 2017

Being a Writer While Young and Female in Indonesia

by Eliza Vitri Handayani
To all fellow young female writers in Jakarta At an art exhibition, a man grabbed my shoulder out of nowhere. He pushed out his bony chest and said, “Hey, I’m a painter!” He looked surprised when I shook his hand off my body and frowned at him – as if that was not the usual reaction he got when he grabbed a girl’s shoulder out of nowhere as if he’d picked up many girls before at art exhibitions simply because he was a painter.
May 18, 2017

Foreword from Makassar International Writers Festival

by Lily Yulianti Farid
With Diversity as the main theme, MIWF opens more room/space for meaningful conversations, intriguing insights and stimulating intellectual exchanges. We want to learn from past conflicts and the ongoing social and political escalations. We hope that through this exchange writers, readers and the general audience will maintain their hopes for a better and humanised Indonesia, a better and humanised World.
Apr 01, 2017

Blood Like Water

by Eve Shi
My friend Budi told me that Pak Eko saw the creature toward midnight. The pensioner was watching a dangdut singing competition on TV when a faint thump came from his front porch. The second time ...
Mar 27, 2017

[Let them eat] Cake

by Ninda Daianti
Ray, always hot tempered, tapped his fingers every three seconds on the table. He hated waiting. Lola, as usual, hadn’t arrived just yet; Ray looked at his watch. They’ve been coming here for the past ...
Jan 30, 2016

I hated gays, and they weren’t real — back then

by Okky Madasari
Sometimes we hate something just because we don’t understand it. This is exactly what happened to me when it comes to homosexuality. Ten years ago, I was in my early 20s and had just moved ...
Jan 01, 2016

After ’98: Censorship, compromises and resistance

by Eliza Vitri Handayani
October 2015 was a busy and controversial month for Indonesian literature dealing with the history of the 1965–66 mass killings in Indonesia. First, there was the Frankfurt Book Fair where Indonesia was the focus country ...
Dec 17, 2015

A Bloody Past: On Censorship in Indonesia

by Eliza Vitri Handayani
On October 23, I received news from the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival: due to warnings from local police, the festival had to cancel sessions related to 1965 anti-communist massacres and their aftermath. I was ...
Nov 11, 2015

Being silenced in Ubud

by Andina Dwifatma
The recent Ubud Writers and Readers Festival (UWRF) 2015 controversy raises the question: Whatever happened to our much-vaunted freedom of speech? Three discussion sessions related to communism and 1965 were canceled, including a panel on ...
Oct 27, 2015

Censorship is returning to Indonesia in the name of the 1965 purges

by Laksmi Pamuntjak
A week ago I received a message from Janet DeNeefe, director of the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival. “I just wanted to let you know that the UWRF is being censored this year, and we have been told to remove all programs to do with ‘1965’,” she wrote. “Or else next year they will not give us a permit to hold the festival.”