Interview with Faisal Oddang for the British Council

Interview with Faisal Oddang for the British Council

Will News 2 Comments

Here in Yangon, our creative writing classes are in full swing, and it’s a lot of fun; but I’m also aware that back in the UK things are gearing up for the London Book Fair, and I’m also disappointed that I can’t be in two places at once. This year the LBF has an Indonesia focus, and as some Indonesian writer friends are going to be over in the UK, I’m sad not to be there with them.

As some compensation, the British Council asked me to do an online interview with the remarkably energetic and prolific Faisal Oddang, one of Indonesia’s most exciting young writers. The interview can be found on the British Council website. Faisal is a fascinating interviewee, and our brief exchange covers politics, violence, religion, traditional Bugis culture, gender and writing as a process of getting to grips with understanding the world. Go and have a read!

Comments 2

  1. Excellent interview! I am so keen to read Faisal’s work but disappointed not to be able to find out how I can acquire them other than via Amazon which I try to avoid. I will try Foyles but they won’t have everything. I was in the Soppeng/Sengkang area 45 years ago, was a friend of Christian Pelras. We attended a wedding and admired the graceful dancers who were the keepers of the king’s jewels. Sadly young lads from the city mocked the dancers, the beginning we felt of the lessening of respect for them. I would like to know how things are to-day and hope I might meet Faisal tomorrow. He had a terrible time with the British Immigration people taking to long with his visa so arrived a day late! I hope to be able to get your book too, Will, at Foyles or Waterstones and have a feeling we might have similar views about anthropology which I also studied at university! All the best, Kate
    PS I’m brushing up my Bahasa Indonesia in case I make it back to Sulawesi.

    1. Hi, Kate,
      (Agh! Comment mangled. Let me try again). I hope that Foyles come up with the goods, and that you managed also to catch up with Faisal.
      British immigration is horrible. It’s so absurd to have writers for events like this held up like that.
      It would be really interesting to get back to Sulawesi. Good luck! I hope to get back to Maluku some time in the next year or so.
      All the best,
      Will

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