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Indonesia is our nearest international neighbour consisting of 17,000 islands. Home to multiple ethnic groups, languages and religions, Indonesia has a rich body of literature. Its complexity reflects the depth and breadth of diversity of its people.
This event, jointly hosted by the Centre for Stories, the Australia Indonesia Centre and the UWA Public Policy Institute, will highlight the work of female Indonesian writers who have challenged dominant narratives. Join us to learn how they explore history, religion, feminist and queer issues, religion and political violence, drawing inspiration from local and Western traditions.
You will hear from the work of visiting writer Erni Aladjai and from Iven Manning and Alberta Natasia Aadji who will read the work of selected female Indonesian writers. Following the readings, Professor Krishna Sen will facilitate a discussion on Indonesian literature.
This event is part of the Centre for Stories Lintas Laut: Eastern Indonesia-Western Australia Writing Exchange supported by the Australian Government through the Australia Indonesia Institute of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Visiting writer Erni Aladjai was born in Labobo Island, Central Sulawesi. She completed her degree in French literature at Hasanuddin University in Makassar, South Sulawesi. She has worked as a journalist and news editor and is now a full time writer. Her writing has won multiple awards, a short story Sam Po Soie Soe, The Chef’ won third place in the Short Story Competition at the Jakarta International Literary Festival (2011), two of her writings ‘Boat House’ and ‘Sea-sea, before the rain’ won the second and third place in the 2012 Femina Serial Competition. Her novel ‘Kei’ about civil war and refugees in Maluku won first prize in the 2011 Jakarta Arts Council novel competition. Her latest novel manuscript. ‘Haniyah and Ala in Turtle’s House’ won third place in Novel Writing Competition Jakarta Art Council (2019).
Alberta Natasia Adji
Alberta Natasia Adji is currently a creative writing PhD candidate at Edith Cowan University. She has published two novels, Youth Adagio (2013) and Dante: The Faery and the Wizard (2014), and some of her short stories have been published in Jawa Pos, and her refereed articles have appeared in Makara Hubs-Asia, Life Writing, and in other journals. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English literature and a master’s degree in cultural studies from Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia.
Iven Manning studied Indonesian and Linguistics at the University of Western Australia. His interests include East Indonesian literature, music and ikat textiles. At present Iven is translating a collection of short stories by Dicky Senda, a writer from West Timor, running a monthly Indonesian Literature Club at the Centre for Stories, and teaching English as a second language.
Professor Krishna Sen (FAHA)
Professor Krishna Sen is an internationally recognised scholar of contemporary Indonesia and media studies and is fluent in several South and Southeast Asian languages. She was UWA Dean of Arts (2009-16) and was elected fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities in 2007. She has written extensively on Indonesia, including Indonesian Cinema: Framing the New Order (Zed, London, 1994); Media, Culture and Politics in Indonesia (co-authored, OUP Australia, 2000) and The Internet in Indonesia’s New Democracy (co-authored, Routledge, London, NY, 2005). She is also editor of several monographs including the highly cited Gender and Power in Affluent Asia (co-edited with Maila Stivens, Routledge 1998). In 2014, Krishna was appointed to the Reference Group of the New Colombo Plan under Minister Julie Bishop and she served on it till the end of 2019.