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Marching, Soe Tjen (2008) 'Herlinatiens: between lesbianism, Islam and feminism.' InterAsia Cultural Studies, 9 (1). pp. 7-26.

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In the year 2003, an Indonesian female author Herlinatiens published her novel The Margins of a Lesbian (Garis Tepi Seorang Lesbian) for the first time. It describes the love story of a lesbian, Ashmora Paria, together with detailed descriptions of the main character’s desires for other women. This novel can be considered as transgressive of sexual as well as religious norms in Indonesia. However, contrary to what most critics have claimed, that sexual transgressions in Indonesian literature challenged mainstream Indonesian values and the status quo, I demonstrate how the main character of this novel insists that she is religious and that her lesbianism does not cause her to set up a new cult or follow a new ideology, and/or to create a revolution in her society. Rather, she criticises her society within the discourse of Islam. This paper will demonstrate how the transgressions of the main character function not only to separate but also to communicate, identify and relate to religion (Islam), society and the status quo.

Item Type: Journal Article
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Languages, Cultures & Linguistics
ISSN: 14649373
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2018 19:02

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