Enlightening Discourses on Asean Literary Festival 2017 with Identity, Freedom of Expression and Challenging Future as Most Intriguing Topics
Asean as a regional bloc has lasted for 50 years and the commemoration of such milestone was also celebrated by Asean Literary Festival (ALF) 2017, the fourth edition of its kind with the theme “Beyond Imagination”. From 3 to 6 August 2017 at Kota Tua Compound, Jakarta, ALF brought various exciting programs that children, adults, students, and general public could participate in. Since the opening night held at 3 August 2017 at Fatahillah Square by renown authors from Indonesia and Malaysia, ALF continued to hold some of the most thought provoking discussion throughout the event. Traditional discourses from various fields like sociology, politics, and literature led by experts managed to raise awareness in our ever changing society. They also shed a light on Asean identity, how we as an Indonesian could contribute to our region and how being a member of the regional bloc could affect our point of view. On a program called “We Are All Sinners” led by Glenn L. Diaz, Feby Indirani and Ni Komang Ariani, we were reminded once again that no matter what is our religious beliefs, each of us committed to a sin that makes us human and we were basically built just the same.
ALF 2017 also became a platform for book launching for famed author like A. Fuadi who wrote phenomenal book series of “5 Menara”. Booths from various publishers, literary communities, and many more welcomed the audience to explore the world of literature. From what we witnessed during the celebration of ALF 2017, albeit bringing provocative issues up front like religion and identity, the speakers and the audience seemed to be level-headed, thus making the discussion an arguments flowed smoothly. The event also gave way for the current thinkers and our future generations to think about the time ahead. One of the discourse made apparent was gender, and feminists are on the front row to tackle various issues. It was highlighted that women will play more prominent roles in this man’s world, and it was actually okay to acknowledge them. Performances from traditional to modern performers became the cherry on top of the whole festival. Asean Literary Festival 2017 has held an important agenda for our generation to be more aware about their existence and how they could make this world a better place. Hopefully, the next edition of the event would be more sufficed to bring more topics and participants from a wider scope with a better accommodated media tour.
Reporter: Bonifasius Eiji/Editor: Novita Widia