‘Lack of funding hinders progress of young literati’

National 1 minute, 39 seconds


LACK of funding is preventing young literary figures in the Malay Archipelago from establishing and building on their networks.

This hinders their ability to introduce their works to larger audiences beyond their respective country, said a visiting poet yesterday.

Promoting closer interaction among young literati in the region will not only provide them greater understanding in the area of socio-cultural cooperation, but also allow them to gain new knowledge and experiences that will benefit their work.

Malaysian Poet Dato’ Dr Zurinah Hassan told The Brunei Times yesterday that young literati – including authors, poets and playwrights – need financial support from institutions or bodies in order for them to participate in regional literati conferences.

“They need funds to attend regional meetings. The organisers should find ways to pay for their trip,” said Dato’ Dr Zurinah on the sidelines of the 18th Regional Malay Literati Conference.

She explained that senior literati do not face similar problems as they can usually garner support and funding from institutions that they are affiliated with.

She called on the young literati to make use of current technology for personal productivity, adding that they have more options nowadays in getting references from books or via the Internet.

Dato’ Dr Zurinah Hassan said that, in the past, she had no options but to go into town to buy books for references. She also used a typewriter to prepare manuscripts.

“We had to (start) all over again when we made mistakes on the typewriter. It took time to prepare our works,” she recalled.

Hj Jawawi Hj Ahmad, Head II of the Brunei Darussalam Association of Writers (Asterawani), said that young literati should also keep upgrading themselves by reading other literary works.

This will give them ideas in writing as opposed to solely basing their works on information provided in the social media.

He also stressed the importance of instilling the reading habit among the youth as one of the ways to appreciate and elevate literature.

The Brunei Times