In this Issue - Non-Fiction


The Asia Literary Review is delighted to present this supplementary issue focused exclusively on Indonesian stories, produced with the assistance of the Lontar Foundation, an independent, non-profit organisation based in Jakarta whose primary aim since 1987 has been to promote Indonesian literature and culture through the translation of Indonesian literary works.



The literary works by Indonesian authors featured in this edition of the Asia Literary Review are not bound by a particular theme, though if there is one that is dominant in the volume, it is violence – either direct or implied. Violence plays an important role in modern Indonesian history, both in the years around independence in 1945, and in the periods around the repressive regimes that have ruled this country. The birth of the Soeharto government’s ‘New Order’ regime, for instance (1965–1998), was marked by the widespread slaughter of Communist Party members as well as alleged leftist sympathisers. Meanwhile, the end of the regime, which was hastened by the Asian economic crisis, ignited widespread mayhem that peaked with the ‘unrest’ of May 1998.