A literary mirror : Balinese reflections on modernity and by I Nyoman Darma Putra

By I Nyoman Darma Putra

A Literary mirror is the 1st English-language paintings to comprehensively examine Indonesian-language literature from Bali from a literary and cultural point of view. It covers the interval from 1920 to 2000. this is often a really wealthy box for study into the methods Balinese view their tradition and the way they reply to exterior cultural forces. This paintings enhances the massive variety of latest experiences of Bali and its heritage, anthropology, conventional literature, and the appearing arts. A Literary Mirror is a useful source for these learning twentieth-century Balinese authors who wrote in Indonesian. previously, such writers have obtained little or no recognition within the current literature. An appendix offers brief biographical information of many major writers and lists their paintings. complete textual content (Open entry)

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Extra info for A literary mirror : Balinese reflections on modernity and identity in the twentieth century

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Many Balinese writers were teachers who were familiar with Malay, and it is probably because of this influence that early writers used the syair form. Other Balinese 34 A literary mirror probably encountered Malay literature when Javanese teachers working in Bali introduced them to it (Agung 2001:131), or when they were studying in Java. Panji Tisna, for example, began to write poetry and syair when he continued his studies in Batavia (now Jakarta), where he had become immersed in the Malay language in the early 1920s (Caldwell 1985:58).

Literature and essays on culture in Poedjangga Baroe in the 1930s also show a consistent sense of the significance of being Indonesian. This journal was important as an outlet for publishing literary work and also mediated an important polemik kebudayaan (cultural polemic) where nationalist activists exchanged ideas about the ideal culture for the proposed new Indonesian nation (Mihardja 1977; Foulcher 1991). While Sutan Takdir Alisjahbana asserted the importance of Indonesian culture being developed using modern and Western culture, Sanusi Pane and others argued that traditional culture and Eastern values should be used as the foundation of this new culture.

They are shown as trying to stay away from their culture. At first they appear to be symbols of modernity, but by the end of the stories they are portrayed as examples of a divided self, uprooted from their own society but failing to obtain European identity. Samsul Bahri in Sitti Nurbaya is portrayed as a traitor when fighting on the colonial side against his own people, while Hanafi in Salah asuhan fails to realize his ambition to become Dutch. When he dies his body is at first refused burial in the village cemetery because he is considered to have become Dutch (‘karena ia sudah masuk Belanda’).

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