Laksmi Pamuntjak’s novel “The Question of Red”: The silence is broken

All Things Books / Review

About The Question of Red: A Novel,
Written by Bettina David, and was originally published in Qantara,
Oct 14, 2015

In her novel “The Question of Red”, Indonesian author Laksmi Pamuntjak effectively combines the multi-faceted nature of the island state′s sociopolitical system and its bloody recent history with the fate of her fictional protagonists. Bettina David read the book

On the Islamic island of Java, many people are named after figures from the Hindu epics Ramayana and Mahabharata, populated by gods and heroes – names that still stand for beauty and gallantry, grace and wisdom. However, as Laksmi Pamuntjak writes at the very start of her novel “The Question of Red”, you won′t find an Amba there – her fate in the Mahabharata seems too awful.

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