[Blueboard] Invitation to the Department of English Lecture Series

Department of English [LS] english.soh at ateneo.edu
Tue Nov 17 10:20:29 PHT 2015

You are invited to a lecture on the




Graduate Program in English Language Studies, Universitas Sanata Dharma

Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Saturday, 21 November 2015

SEC C-201A



This paper traces the remnants of essentialist attitudes of the
Indonesians, particularly the Javanese, in defining their postcolonial
identity in two works of an Indonesian author, Umar Kayam, namely “Kimono
Biru buat Istri” (“The Blue Kimono”) (1974) and *Jalan Menikung* (*The
Winding Road*) (1999). These stories were written in the beginning and the
end of the New Order. They signify the narrowing of Homi K Bhabha’s third
space, leaving fewer options for *priyayi* (the Javanese noble) action with
the result that corruption becomes the more prominent option. The magnet of
traditional *priyayi* moral values is still felt but seems increasingly
irrelevant to the modern, New Order, state. In the following discussion I
am particularly interested in (1) How the stories reveal the logic
underlying the New Order political legacy by reproducing the anti-communist
discourse; (2) How the stories reflect the failure of the Postcolonial
third space to be the transformative force in Indonesia; (3) How Kayam
universalizes *priyayi* values to include their application to Chinese and
Jewish American figures – two ethnic groups demonized by the New Order
regime and Islamists. I argue that these stories reflect how that
essentialist discourse has been deployed effectively in Indonesian
political arena to induce false consciousness among the people and to
support the status quo.


My Master’s degree is in Comparative Literature from Louisiana State
University (2004 – the Fulbright scholarship) and Doctorate degree is in
Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies from Monash University (2013 –
DIKTI scholarship). I have been teaching in Universitas Sanata Dharma since
1996. I am interested in Postcolonial literature, Critical theory and
Cultural Studies. The following are papers that I presented in a

“Translated Literary Works in Indonesian English Studies: Propositions and
Challenges” (International conference on Translation Studies ‘Translating
Asia: Then and Now’ at the University of Thai Chamber of Commerce 5-6 June

“Rewriting *Gestapu*: Problematizing Identity Politics in Umar Kayam’s
“Bawuk” and “Sri Sumarah”” (The 2nd Literary Studies Conference
‘Reconstructing Southeast Asian History through Literature at Universitas
Sanata Dharma 16-17 October 2014)

“Indonesian Critical Discourse and English Literature: Possible
Reconfiguration” (1st Literary Studies Conference ‘Configuring and
Reconfiguring English Literature in Southeast Asia’ at Universitas Sanata
Dharma 18-18 October 2013)

“Colonialism, Traditionalism and Nationalism in Umar Kayam’s *Para Priyayi*”
(RAFIL 3 at the National University of Singapore 11-13 November 2011)

Department of English
School of Humanities
Ateneo de Manila University
Katipunan Avenue, Loyola Heights,
Quezon City 1108
Tel. no.: 426-6001 local 5310/5311
Telefax: 426-6120
Email: english.soh at ateneo.edu
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