22 May 2017

"Writing Today's Troubled World": Laksmi Pamuntjak's Lecture for Leiden Asia Year 2017

Leiden, Holland
16:30 - 18:30

"Writing Today's Troubled World": A Lecture by Laksmi Pamuntjak (presented by KITLV and Leiden University Library)


“This talk is an attempt to bring together literature, the politics of difference, political developments in Indonesia and at a wider global level, and the role of the novel in bridging the world. I will use recent examples in Indonesian and Southeast Asian literature that have ‘gone global’, as well as my three novels, particularly the novel I’m currently writing. A sequel of sorts to my first novel, Amba/The Question of Red, this novel attempts to present the multiple realities of both “East” and “West,” what it means to have to constantly navigate between different cultures; to be both “Indonesian” (Indonesia itself being an artificial construct, a 20th century modern political invention), and to be a global citizen; to look into the tension between art and activism, and to maintain one’s freedom and dignity in a world gone fascist. In the most intimate terms, it is a novel about mothers and daughters—a leitmotif in my body of work.”