Zen Hae’s stories focus on Betawi people—the original inhabitants of Jakarta. His characters, often presented in empathetic descriptions, are common people: scavengers, land brokers, traditional artists and the like; people whose lives and fates are constantly being tested in the face of massive development and modernity.
Dias’ collection of short stories indulge in creating every-day habitual, lonely and melancholy interactions and relationships of people. Her bleak and quite often ironic humor compliment these heart-break stories, inviting the reader into experiencing ordinary sad stories of unremarkable, ordinary beings.
Set in a small hotel in Yogyakarta, this play is a tale of thwarted aspirations and the mundane realities of adult life. It is also a commentary on the fluidity of sexual behavior as one female and two male characters try to ascertain the meaning of their relations with one another.
Few Indonesian essayists can compete with Nirwan Arsuka in his ability to pull together different strands of thought, periods of history, and fields of knowledge in a cohesive unit that is easy-to-read. Nirwan exercises a remarkably dexterous hand when it comes to bringing characters from the distant past back to life.
Ni Made’s poetry invites the reader into quite often quotidian descriptions and moments of life that simultaneously express very symbolic and allegorical messages. She writes very evocatively of nature, locality and place to portray self-exploratory, confessional and questioning narratives.
This collection of short stories portray quite melancholy and devastating events in which Cyntha’s plaintive, unglorified descriptions make these stories of loss all the more poignant. These stories focus predominantly on the experience of being a woman, exploring issues of domestic violence, racism, sexual objectification and jealousy.
Taufik Ikram Jamil’s poetry is filled with references to the geography, history and classic Malay literature. With their Malay flavor and diction, his poems convey a tension between the past and present, between the colloquial and the literary, and between regionalism and nationalism. The poet bequeaths the wealth of the Malay language.