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Jakarta Post / All Things Books
May 24, 2024

Jakarta Post / As Seen On
May 21, 2024

Foreign Affairs / What Media Says
May 17, 2024

Electric Literature / All Things Books
May 16, 2024

Putu Oka Sukanta


One of the Indonesia’s literary figures. He wrote poetry, short stories and novels while still in Bali and after he moved to Yogyakarta and Jakarta. In 1966 during the time of New Order (Indonesia), he imprisoned because he had been considered as a member of LEKRA (one of the organizations of Communist Party of Indonesia PKI) without trial. After his release in 1976, he has come to be known as a writer, journalist and an expert in the field of traditional medicine as well.

In 1982 and 1983, Putu had an opportunity to attend the Popular Theatre Workshop in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Some of his works are published in foreign languages. He is also a contributing editor and a senior staff member of an alternative magazines. They are also available in Indonesian Progressive Contemporary Poetry (Indonesia, 1963), The Prison Where I Live (London, 1996), Voice of Consciences (USA, 1995), Bali Behind The Seen (Australia, 1997), Black Cloud Over Paradise Isle (USA, 1997), Manageri IV (Indonesia, 1998), and Silenced Voices (Hawaii, 2000).

He is also the producer of many documentary films, one of which portrays the social impact of the tragic events of 1965 when hundreds of thousands of Indonesians fell victim to nationwide massacres.

Besides being known as a writer, he expertised in the field of traditional medicine. During the time being captured in Salemba jail, Putu studied acupuncture and acupressure from a Chinese doctor who placed in the same cell. After his release from prison in 1978, he went to Taipei and Hong Kong to deepen the knowledge. In 1980, he established the Foundation for Traditional Medicine in Indonesia. He was married to Endah Lasmadiwati in 1987. In 1990, he was put back in jail due to his efforts to teach traditional medicine on the people suspected by the government. Throughout the New Order regime, he was never released from surveillance even while abroad. After his release from prison, Putu and his wife continued to gather herbs grown in Indonesia for their foundation. His expertise in acupuncture and herbs has taken him around the world in 23 countries. Now Putu Oka Sukanta to the Central Executive of the Association of Indonesian Naturopath Ikatan Naturopatis Indonesia. The Foundation facilitates to conduct research on traditional treatment methods for patients with HIV / AIDS.1

  1. Wikipedia 

In the Headlines

A part of history

Inside Indonesia / As Seen On
Dec 10, 2023

First Highlight Speaker Release

UWRF News / Press Release
Jul 26, 2022

The isolation poems by Putu Oka Sukanta

Inside Indonesia / What Media Says
Oct 09, 2021

Indonesian writer confronts COVID-19 through poetry

Conversation / What Media Says
Aug 06, 2021

Putu Oka Sukanta and the Hidden Wounds of World History

Asymptote / What Media Says
Jan 16, 2020

Where are all the Indonesian writers?

National Centre for Writing / As Seen On
Feb 22, 2019

Five Minutes With… Pam Allen

UWRF News / As Seen On
May 07, 2017

A drink for humanity

Inside Indonesia / What Media Says
Feb 20, 2017


Jakarta Post / What Media Says
Dec 14, 2016

Let Bygones Be Bygones

Asia Literary Review / As Seen On
Nov 01, 2015

The Lontar Foundation Publishes Modern Indonesian Classics

Publishing Perspectives / As Seen On
Feb 18, 2015


World Literature Today / As Seen On
Dec 23, 2014


Jakarta Post / What Media Says
Jul 26, 2013


Jakarta Post / What Media Says
Jul 25, 2013

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