Layar Terkembang: Socio-Cultural Themes

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The story begins with Tuti and Maria visiting a local aquarium at a fish market in Jakarta. There they meet a new acquaintance, a young man named Yusuf who studies medicine at a Sekolah Tabib Tinggi. From then a romantic bond between Yusuf and Maria grows deeper. He visits her house, exchange letters with her and not long after Yusuf proposed. Their happy relationship makes Tuti feel distressed, especially because she has failed in her past relationships. Unfortunately, nearing the wedding day, Maria’s health condition worsens because of Tuberculosis. On her deathbed at Pacet Sanatorium she suddenly asks Yusuf and her older sister to accept each other as husband and wife. A writer can document the prevalent socio-cultural problems that occur in his or her environment. In literature, the writer responds to what he or she sees and transforms it into illustrative words or fictional stories and characters. This is perhaps why some fictional stories can convey the reality (or the truth) better than our filtered and constructed mainstream news publications. Thus, literature may represent the social reality of a certain era. Some of the themes used in old literary works are timeless and when you read those books the past and the present socio-cultural problems become indistinct. This is what I experienced when I read ‘Layar…show more content…
In this book, which was published before our nation’s independence, he communicates noteworthy ideas and insights to us who lives in this Reformation era. In the 1930s, his perspective about youth, religion, the relationship between life and death that were discussed in that book would be considered unconventional. One of the primary themes within ‘Layar Terkembang’ that is still relevant today is about the emancipation of women. STA’s perspective about this socio-cultural issue is embedded in the lives (i.e. their thoughts and social relations) of the female protagonist in this

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