(Sumatra 1924) is a Poet of the generation of 1945. He worked in Indonesia as a journalist and as a teacher at the National Academy for Theatre in Jakarta. He was chairman of the National Council of Culture. From 1967 to 1976 he was imprisoned under Souharto's regime. From 1982 to 1990 he was a professor at Leiden University. After that he lived respectively in Pakistan, Paris and Jakarta. He now lives in the Netherlands. In 1990 Bloem op een rots (Flower on a Rock; poems) was published; in 1996 De oude tijger (The Old Tiger, short stories). The bilingual collection of stories Lembah Kekal/Eeuwige Vallei (Eternal Valley) was published in October 2004 in Jakarta on the occasion of his 80th birthday. At this moment a film portrait is being made. In October 2006 he was Awarded with the South East Asain Write Award in Bangkok.
Archive available for: Sitor Situmorang
Right and Wrong
Living in a country torn by war means making choices, choosing between right and wrong, is the general feeling. But when is 'good' good? What does the retrospective view do with these value judgements? 'During the war you just lived your life,' says Immanuel Hutajulu, 'the gentleman bandit', on the choices he never made. Actor Martijn Apituley played Immanuel's life story, written by Marije Plomp. Writer and poet Sitor Situmorang read from his story Kasim, about the well-considered choices of a perseverant civil servant. His honest objectives are not rewarded. Dutch spoken.
At this time in the programma, writer Hella Haasse would have spoken on her latest book 'Bij de les' ( At the lesson ) on school-posters on the Netherlands-Indies, used in schools in the colonial era. Last Friday Mrs. Haasse informed us that she was ill and unable to perform at the festival. In all haste we have put together an alternative programme around her new book. Eight writers, all experts on the Dutch Indies and friends and admirers of Hella Haasse, have been asked to choose one of the school posters, give his or her commentary on this and also react to the accompanying text. They will compare Mrs. Haasse's memories with their own image evoked by the posters and comment on Mrs. Haasse's observatons. Up to now the following people have promised to take part: Adriaan van Dis, Helga Ruebsamen, Sitor Sitomorang - Indonesian poet and contemporary of Mrs. Haasse - writer Hans Vervoort, journalist and writer John Jansen van Galen and Peter van Zonneveld, who with Mrs. Haasse went over the rough version of her book. Paul van der Gaag, presentor of VPRO's radio programme O.V.T. will chair the discussion. In the course of this week more names of participants will be published. We are convinced that in this way the book 'Bij de les' (At the lesson) and Hella Haasse will receive the attention that they so justly deserve.
Indische Winternacht 1997
With: Adriaan van Dis, Aya Zikken, Carel Alphenaar, De Nazaten van Prins Hendrik, Gamelan Ensemble Widosari, Hans Vervoort, Hella Haasse, Jill Stolk, Marion Bloem, Michaël Zeeman, Mischa de Vreede, Radhar Panca Dahana, Rayuan Samud'ra, Rendra, Sitok Srengenge, Sitor Situmorang, The Galaxy Band, Wieteke van Dort
In 1997 the second edition of the Indische Winternacht took place: a Dutch and Indonesian evening of literature, music, film and storytelling. Among the participants were: Adriaan van Dis, Wieteke van Dort, Mischa de Vreede, Jill Stolk, Hella Haasse, Aya Zikken, Marion Bloem, and from Indonesia Rendra, Sitor Situmorang, Panca Dahana and Sitok Srengenge. The writers were introduced by Carel Alphenaar and interviewed by Michaël Zeeman. With music by The Galaxy Band, Gamelan Ensemble Widosari and De Nazaten van Prins Hendrik.