Reflections of Eärendil and Túrin Turambar in a Bugis Mythical Hero

Eärendil, by Alarie

Shared themes are not unusual in the world of mythology and folklore. Tolkien created characters like Eärendil and Túrin Turambar to explore themes like voyage, unavoidable tragedy, and familial taboo. Readers may find pieces of these characters reflected in previously-famous figures, like Odyssey from Ancient Greece and Kullervo from Finnish Kalevala. However, a parallel can be drawn from even less culturally familiar source: an epic creation myth of the Bugis from Sulawesi Island, Indonesia, titled La Galigo. Sawerigading, the central figure in the myth, is a rich and complicated character that has subtle parallel with Tolkien’s similarly iconic heroes.

Lanjutkan membaca “Reflections of Eärendil and Túrin Turambar in a Bugis Mythical Hero”

Which Batik Motifs Represent Specific Tolkien Characters?

Batik refers to a technique of wax-resist dyeing applied to a fabric. The technique is popular in many countries, but Indonesian batik patterns are famous for their rich motifs. Batik is currently enjoying a revival in Indonesia after years of being considered old-fashioned. The word batik was first recorded in English in Encyclopedia Britannica in 1880 (spelled battik).

Batik patterns have a unique philosophy in their motifs. In the past, some motifs were even considered exclusive, and only certain people could wear them. This often makes me wonder: if Tolkien characters wore batik in their daily life, what kind of motif that will suit them? Here’s my simple take on them.

Lanjutkan membaca “Which Batik Motifs Represent Specific Tolkien Characters?”

Túrin Turambar and “Spiritual Burden” behind Javanese Naming Philosophy


Strongbow and Dragonhelm, by Elena Kukanova

This blog post was developed into a paper and presented at Tolkien Society Seminar 2018.

When listening to an episode in Prancing Pony Podcast about Of Túrin Turambar chapter in The Silmarillion, I was struck with one particular notion emphasized in the podcast: the fact that Túrin changed his name several times (or bestowed a name by others). Each name reflects different aspect of his life, such as Neithan (“The Wronged”), Gorthol (“The Dread Helm”), Agarwaen, son of Úmarth (“Bloodstained, son of Ill-fate”), Adanedhel (“Man-Elf”), Mormegil (“Black Sword), and the infamous Turambar (“Master of Doom”). These names reflect changes that happened in Túrin’s life.

Lanjutkan membaca “Túrin Turambar and “Spiritual Burden” behind Javanese Naming Philosophy”

What It Means to Read “Roverandom” after My Grandmother’s Death

tales from perilous realm

A week ago, after suffering from years of chronic illness, my grandmother finally passed away. 

Lanjutkan membaca “What It Means to Read “Roverandom” after My Grandmother’s Death”

Comparing the Indonesian Edition Covers of Lord of the Rings

Gramedia Pustaka Utama, a Jakarta-based publisher, has announced the republication of the Indonesian edition of Lord of the Rings on 29 August 2016. The books have new covers like these: 

Lanjutkan membaca “Comparing the Indonesian Edition Covers of Lord of the Rings”

A Casual Reader’s Thought of “Baptism of Fire: The Birth of the Modern British Fantastic in World War I”

I have grown from a lanky schoolgirl who watched the first Lord of the Rings movie in an almost-dilapidated local cinema with my mouth gaped in wonder, to a serious book hoarder who read books that I had never imagined I would’ve read, such as The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien, Perilous and Fair: Women in the Works and Life of J. R. R. Tolkien, and finally this one: Baptism of Fire: the Birth of the Modern British Fantastic in World War I. While I’ll forever envy the likes of Tom Shippey, Dimitra Fimi, Verlyn Flieger and John Garth for having a career that surrounds the works of Tolkien, I’m quite happy to be immersed in Tolkien’s works, along with other books that help improving my understanding toward his modern mythology. 

Lanjutkan membaca “A Casual Reader’s Thought of “Baptism of Fire: The Birth of the Modern British Fantastic in World War I””

Indonesia’s Mobile Libraries: Bringing “Reading Virus” to Villages and Islands

The box says: “Horse Library (of) Mount Slamet”


In the late 1990’s, Luis Soriano stacked books on the back of two donkeys, Alfa and Beto, and brought them to impoverished areas in Magdalena Province, Colombia. An elementary school teacher with Spanish literature degree and a huge love for books, Luis was inspired by a dedicated professor who visited his town twice a month when he was little. He also saw the powerful effect of reading on his students, who lived in poor regions and have witnessed bloody conflicts in their fragile years. His mobile library, Biblio Burro (“Donkey Library”), slowly added its collections through donations; from mere 70 books to more than 4,000 books. Luis experienced setback a few years ago because of an accident that required his leg to be amputated, but he refused to stop his mission in spreading the power of reading among poor children in his region. 

Lanjutkan membaca “Indonesia’s Mobile Libraries: Bringing “Reading Virus” to Villages and Islands”