This Earth of Mankindby Pramoedya Ananta Toer
Minke is a young Javanese student of great intelligence and ambition. Living equally among the colonists and colonized of 19th-century Java, he battles against the confines of colonial strictures. It is his love for Annelies that enables him to find the strength to embrace his world.
Meet the Author
Pramoedya Ananta Toer, born on the island of Java in 1925, was imprisoned first by the Dutch, then by the Indonesian government as a political prisoner. He received the PEN Freedom to Write Award and the Ramon Magsaysay Award.
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¿This Earth of Mankind¿ tells a tragically engrossing story of the struggles a young man and his people are forced to cope with. In a caste system that dictates everything from life achievement to daily language depending on where one falls in the strata, Minke, the main character, strives to become everything and anything he desires and desperately avoids becoming what he does not. Throughout the story, the human spirit is often shown overcoming the greatest obstacles, and at other times, frequently crumbling beneath the smallest stones. A book that displays all angles of mankind, from its most philanthropic gestures to its most despicable prejudices, it is sure to boil one¿s emotions. For those who revel in tales of humanity at its best and at its worst, ¿This Earth of Mankind¿ is a must read.
Toer addresses the Indonesian social consciousness in incredibly sensitive, human terms. His writing speaks powerfully for the values of justice and inalienable human rights the Indonesian Government imprisoned him for. I not only enjoyed the characters and plot Toer illustrates beautifully, but was also engrossed by the allegorical and symbolic implications which Toer weaves seamlessly into the text. I can't wait to read the rest of the Buru quartet. This book deserves to be read!