Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Biography of Sutan Takdir Alisjahbana


Sutan Takdir Alisjahbana ( 1908 – 1994 ), an Indonesian writter and philosopher, became known for his pioneering studies of the Indonesian Language and its literature. He became rektor (president) of The Indonesian National University in Jakarta in 1968.
Takdir Alisjahbana was born in Sumatera. He was able to attend a Dutch School. He had his first novel published in 1929. he became a shool teacher, but only for a year. In 1930 he moved to Jakarta and found employment with the Balai Pustaka, the government literary institute. In 1933, he became one of the founding editors of Pujangga Baru, a most influental literary magazine in Indonesia.
1n 1937, Takdir Alisjahbana began his studies at the school of law in Jakarta. He took his law degree in 1942. After the Japanese ocupied Indonesia in 1942, Takdir became head of the language office and worked on the depelopment of the Indonesian language. This depelopment was necessary because the Japanese forbade the use of Dutch, and at first few Indonesian knew Japanese. After the Japanese surrender in 1945, Takdir became involved in the Indonesia Socialist Party. From 1945 until 1960, he was a member of verious legislative councils and commiitees. From 1958, he traveled and extended his education in Europe, particulary in Germany. From 1959 until 1962, he lived in the United States.
He was unwilling to return to Indonesia under President Sukarno. In 1963, he became professor in the University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur. At the time, during the confrontation between Indonesia and Malaysia. The Indonesian government branded him a traitor. They seized his property in Indonesia. In 1968, after the fall of President Sukarno, he returned to Indonesia to live.
Takdir Alisjahbana wrote many books and articles, including works on philosophy, culture, language, literature, and history. He was appointed to posts in many Indonesian and International organization.
Taken From : The Word Book, Volume 19

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