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Sat, 14 Mar


Better Read Than Dead

Unrepressed with Eliza Vitri Handayani, Tiffany Tsao & Julie Koh

Eliza Vitri Handayani, Tiffany Tsao & Julie Koh discuss Unrepressed — InterSastra’s latest literature-in-translation series. Learn about what it takes to start & maintain a literary initiative, their experiences in cross-cultural & cross-linguistic collaboration, and hear readings from their work.

Unrepressed with Eliza Vitri Handayani, Tiffany Tsao & Julie Koh
Unrepressed with Eliza Vitri Handayani, Tiffany Tsao & Julie Koh

Time & Location

14 Mar 2020, 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

Better Read Than Dead, 265 King St, Newtown NSW 2042, Australia


About The Event

Eliza Vitri Handayani, Tiffany Tsao and Julie Koh discuss what’s going on behind the scenes of Unrepressed — InterSastra’s  latest literature-in-translation series. 

In addition to reading from their contributions to the series, Eliza, Tiffany and Julie will talk about what it takes to start and maintain a literary initiative, their experiences in cross-cultural and cross-linguistic collaboration, and working to achieve inclusivity in the arts.

Featuring short works translated between English and Indonesian, Unrepressed is about promoting the creative exploration and discussion of themes that are often sidelined, suppressed, or considered taboo - such as diversity, sexuality, gender equity, mental health, human rights, and religious innovation - to bring positive change in society.

Copies of Eliza's From Now On Everything Will Be Completely Different, Julie's Portable Curiosities, and Tiffany's Under Your Wings will be available to buy on the night, alongside a selection of translated Indonesian writing, such as Norman Erikson Pasaribu’s poetry collection Sergius Seeks Bacchus and Intan Paramaditha's exciting new novel The Wandering.   

This is a FREE event. Drinks and nibbles provided.  


About the Authors' Books

As democratic reforms swept Indonesia in the late nineties, the nation’s  young generation asked themselves: what does it mean to be free? Spanning fifteen years, Eliza Vitri Handayani's From Now On Everything Will Be Completely Different follows the struggles and hopes, loves and disappointments of two young Indonesians who came of age during Reformasi. Handayani presents a portrait of the changing and complex reality of contemporary Indonesia, and of the younger generation born out of revolution. It's is a compelling study of freedom and love, community and conformity, told with humour, sensuality and a subtly sharp political intelligence. 

Tiffany Tsao's Under Your Wings is a powerful and evocative literary thriller from a stunning new Australian voice that will appeal to fans of Donna Tartt and Alice Sebold. Travelling from the luxurious world of the rich and powerful in Jakarta to the most spectacular shows at Paris Fashion Week, from the coasts of California to the melting pot of Melbourne’s university scene, Under Your Wings is an evocative and deeply compelling novel about the secrets that can build a family empire - and ultimately bring it crashing down. 

Julie Koh's Portable Curiosities re-imagines our world with a dark, satirical twist. These twelve stories combine absurd humour with searing critiques on contemporary society – the rampant consumerism, the casual misogyny, the insidious fear of those who are different. Brilliantly clever and brimming with heart, this unforgettable collection is the work of a significant emerging talent. 


About the Authors

Eliza Vitri Handayani is a novelist, creator of art events, and literary translator. Writing in Indonesian and English, her original works have appeared in Indonesian and international literary outlets. Her novel From Now On Everything Will Be Different earned her a WrICE fellowship and invitations to various festivals.     Eliza is the founding director of InterSastra, an independent initiative for barrier-breaking creative exploration and exchange. She has translated writers from Indonesia and other countries, and created House of the Unsilenced and Fashion ForWords art events. She is a member of As-Salam Collective and an Australia Arts Council’s International Arts Leader 2019. Read some of her works at, and greet her on Instagram or Twitter @elizavitri.

Tiffany Tsao is a writer and literary translator. Her third novel, Under Your Wings, was longlisted for the 2019 Ned Kelly Award. Her translations from Indonesian to English include Norman Erikson Pasaribu’s poetry collection Sergius Seeks Bacchus and Dee Lestari’s novel Paper Boats. Her translations of Norman’s poetry have won the English PEN Presents and English PEN Translates awards. 

Julie Koh is the author of Capital Misfits and Portable Curiosities. In 2017, she was named a Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelist. Her fiction has appeared in the Best Australian Stories and Best Australian Comedy Writing. Julie edited the anthology BooksActually’s Gold Standard and was a judge for the 2018 Stella Prize. She has written two radio plays for Radio National Fictions and the libretto for the satirical opera Chop Chef.


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