Literature | Thursday, January 14th, 2016 | sundanesecorner.org
As far as we can note, 25 books in Sundanese were published in 2015. The previous year showed more books, which consisted of 34 titles. Hence, the publication is declining.
In its writing category, the landscape of Sundanese publication of 2015 was the same with the one of previous years, in the sense that it was still dominated by fictions, both prose and poetry. Only three books of nonfiction were published last year, i.e. a collection of essays and a spiritual reflection.
Those who wrote the works were generally well-known. Holisoh M.E. and Usep Romli, for instance, each published two titles. Hadi AKS, Enang Rokajat Asura, and Dian Hendrayana each published a book. From among the writers that previously were unnoticed, there were Andang S. Argayuda, Imam Mudrika, Jejen Jaelani, Muhammad Ridwan Trijana, Toto Sudito, Wahyu Heriyadi, and Rizki Sanjaya. Imam and Andang each published two titles.
The bibliographical landscape not only consisted of new books. Some books were reprinted in order to preserve literary tradition, e.g. Hujan Munggaran “First Rain” by Ayatrohaedi, a collection of short stories that was first published in 1960, and Carita Budak Yatim “A Tale of an Orphan” by R. Hanafiah, a teen literature first published by Balai Pustaka in 1924. There was also Parawan di Jalan Sepi, Bratakusuma’s Sundanese version of classic detective story entitled The Adventure of the Solitary Cyclist by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
One of the newly published books that were noteworthy was Nadran “Grave Visitation”, a collection of short stories by the prominent Ahmad Bakri (1917-1988). It was published posthumously. It consisted of seven stories about the everyday life of villagers in the past. The theme were various, from love to lie, from individual attitude to society’s belief. Ahmad Bakri’s style is familiar, rich with dialogue among the characters and realistic description of the setting. His stories are humble, often humorous, with strong plots and thick Ciamis’ dialect.
Another book, which is also noteworthy, was a short stories collection by Holisoh M.E. entitled Mun Tulus jadi Randa “If I Become a Widow”. It contains 16 short stories that also tell about the everyday life of villagers in the past, yet not so past compared to the historical setting of Ahmad Bakri’s. Holisoh’s historical setting was around 1970s. Her characters are ordinary people such as labourers, petty vendors, and schoolteacher.
In the category of teen literature, there were three titles, i.e. Ngala Jangkrik “Cicada Hunting”, a short stories collection by Holisoh M.E., Péngkolan Jalan Cikajang “Cikajang Bend”, also a short stories collection by Usép Romli H.M., and Béntang Hariring “The Singer”, a novel by Dian Héndrayana.
Béntang Hariring, which was issued by Komunitas Rawayan, tells a story about a teenage girl that was good in singing so that she won a singing contest. Her father had passed away, and she had to help her mother in keeping a small kiosk, caring for her younger brother, and consequently she often could not go to her school. Her single parent often could not pay her school tuition. Her talent in singing, however, paved the way for her to reach her dreams. As a winning representative of her school in the contest, she got a grant to complete her study, and even to enhance her study at a favourite school. It is a fine allegory of an achievement raised by a teen that come from a less fortunate family.
As usual in the last few years, the most productive publishing house is Kiblat Buku Utama with nine titles of publication. Geger Sunten, which is actually more experienced in the business, issued only one title. Among recently emerging publishing houses are Tulus Pustaka with five titles and Green Smart Books with two titles. All of them are private enterprise based in Bandung, the capital city of West Java. The provincial government, through its tourism bureau, issued only one title.
We also need to note the contribution of small publishers from outside the city, i.e. Gentramarcapada (Bogor), Kentja Press (Ciamis), Kuningan Media (Kuningan), Langari (Tasikmalaya), and LeutikaPrio (Yogyakarta). Their contributions are commendable. In the era of digital communication, their ability to publish books in Sundanese, which is the mother tongue of the second biggest ethnic group in the country, almost resembles madness stubborn.
The challenge that until now has not faced is finding the way to connect the books to their readers, the Sundanese speaking communities, not least in educational institutions. Voices that propose the availability of Sundanese books in school and public libraries throughout the provinces of West Java and Banten has very often echoed.
Sundanese authors, and those who bother to publish their works as well, are undoubtedly in need of help. Otherwise, book publishing in this local language will possibly continue to decline in years come.***
Sundanese Publication of 2015
Compiled by: Hawé Setiawan
|1||Kiceupna Virtual||Wahyu Hériyadi||Collection of poems||Kéntja Press, Ciamis|
|2||Cikahuripan: Lalakon Mupusti Hulu Cai||Toto Sudito||Essay||Kuninganmedia, Kuningan||Dummy|
|3||Lalakon nu Ngalalakon||Inda Nugraha Hidayat||Collection of poems||LeutikaPrio, Yogyakarta|
|4||Ngala Jangkrik||Holisoh M.E.||Children’s Book||Kiblat, Bandung|
|5||Mangsa Bungur Mangkak Kembangan||Djohar Efsa||Collection of short stoies||Tulus Pustaka, Bandung|
|Imam Mudrika||Nonfiction||Geger Sunten, Bandung|
|7||Tritangtu||Imam Mudrika||Nonfiction||Gentramarcapada, Bogor|
|8||Surat dina Kalakay||Muhammad Ridwan Trijana||Poems & Short stories anthology||GSB, Bandung|
|9||Bentang Hariring||Dian Hendrayana||Children’s Book||Rawayan, Bandung|
|10||Mun Tulus jadi Randa||Holisoh M.E.||Collection of short stories||Kiblat, Bandung|
|11||Péngkolan Jalan Cikajang||Usep Romli H.M.||Collection of Short stories (for teenagers)||GSB, Bandung|
|Hayang Panggih jeung Nabi Hidir||Usép Romli H.M||Collection of short stories||Kiblat, Bandung|
|13||Anjar lawan Raja Bangsat||Achmad Rustandi||Silat Story/Novel||Kiblat, Bandung||Reprinted|
|14||Hujan Munggaran||Ayatrohaedi||Collection of short stories||Kiblat, Bandung||Reprinted|
|15||Nadran||Ahmad Bakri||Kumpulan carpon||Kiblat, Bandung|
|16||Carita Budak Yatim||R. Hanapiah||Collection of short stories||Kiblat, Bandung||Reprinted|
|17||Parawan di Jalan Sepi||A. Conan Doyle/ tarj. Bratakusuma||Detective Story||Kiblat, Bandung||Translation|
|18||Panggelar Sastra: Kumpulan Naskah Pagelaran||Hadi AKS||Textbook||Kiblat, Bandung|
|19||Nu Imut di Péngkolan||Andang S. Argayuda||Tulus Pustaka, Bandung|
|20||Asmaralara||Jéjén Jaélani War||Tulus Pustaka, Bandung|
|Marakayangan||Andang S. Argayuda||Tulus Pustaka, Bandung|
|Enang Rokajat Asura||Collection of short stories||Tulus Pustaka, Bandung|
|23||Mungkir: Antologi Sajak Sunda Pamass Unpad||Rizki Sanjaya (ed.)||Poetry anthology||Pamass-Unpad|
|24||Sisindiran: Inventarisasi Sastra Lisan Sunda
|Kalsum et. all. (ed.)||Poetry Anthology||Tourism & Cultural Bureau of West Java|
|25||Lembur Cahaya: Antologi Fiksimini Fikminer Tasikmalaya||Short short stories anthology||Langari|