Sejarah. While some students may view it as their favourite subject, others may loathe it to such an extent that they cower with fear when that name is mentioned, and openly express their distaste for the subject. I, for one, alternated between feelings love and hate while trying to cram the facts and dates into my over-saturated brain, and was somewhat glad to fling it aside once SPM was over.
Yet, throughout the days that followed, some facts remained stuck in my head, including the names of several famous personnels. One such personnel was an Indonesian feminist, a daughter of Javanese nobility-Raden Adjeng Kartini. I don’t remember much about her, except for the fact that she was mentioned briefly, and her writings were collected and published under the title of ‘Letters of a Javanese Princess.’
Somehow, ever since I learnt of its existence, I had been yearning to get my hands on that book. I asked for it whenever I visited any large bookshops, but without avail.
Finally, I acquired it without paying a single cent from the website ‘Project Gutenberg’. I’m now reading it, bit by bit, through my handphone which has now become something of an e-book reader. I intend to go through it ever so slowly, to really delve into its contents, and read between the lines of her correspondences with her Dutch friends, and really get to know this remarkable woman, whom, at a century ago, had thoughts and views that was ahead of her time, and would put many a narrow-minded modern woman to shame. She has such high ambitions and a big heart, and it was such a pity that her life was cut short by her untimely death, shortly after the birth of her son. I often ponder silently–if she had lived, perhaps for many decades longer, how much more could she manage to achieve? I’m sure she would be one of the glorious names that would adorn the pages of many history books.
I’m longing to get to know her better–not in person, for that is impossible, but through the lines of her writings. Her writings were originally in Dutch, but it has been translated to English–or I wouldn’t have been able to understand it. Once I’m done, I will blog more about this wonderful woman–who was indeed an outstanding character, one whom could never be forgotten, whose voice will never be drown out by the passing of time–as long as her volume of letters continue to live on.