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Situated TestimoniesDread and Enchantment in an Indonesian Literary Archive$
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Laurie J. Sears

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780824836832

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824836832.001.0001

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A Neurotic Family Romance of Modernity and the National Form

A Neurotic Family Romance of Modernity and the National Form

(p.88) Chapter 3 A Neurotic Family Romance of Modernity and the National Form
Situated Testimonies

Laurie J. Sears

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter examines the themes of modernity and nationalism in Soewarsih Djojopoespito's novel Buiten het gareel (Free from Restraints). Written in Dutch and published in Holland in 1940, Buiten het gareel is about the romance and narrativity of revolutionary activity rather than a novel that hides phantoms from the past. It may be considered a neurotic family romance, or family narrative, in the sense that it portrays and then deconstructs the romantic nationalist imaginings of the time. Soewarsih explores the limits of Native Indies women's desires and possibilities for emancipation in the intertwined spaces of personal and political life. This chapter first provides a background on Buiten het gareel before drawing on the idea of the family romance to look at the early Indonesian nationalist period and especially Achmad Soekarno, Indoonesia's first president and leader of the emerging ideological field of Indies nationalism in the 1920s and 1930s. It also discusses the issues of Javanese/Sundanese traditions, patriarchy, and the women's movement as tackled by Soewarsih in Buiten het gareel.

Keywords:   modernity, nationalism, Soewarsih Djojopoespito, Buiten het gareel, family romance, family narrative, Indonesia, Achmad Soekarno, patriarchy, women's movement

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