ASEAN 50: Voices From Across The Region



12 Nov, Sun 5:00 PM - 6:30 PM


The Arts House, Gallery II
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This session is in English


Eric Tinsay Valles


As part of ASEAN’s 50th anniversary, the Festival celebrates the richness and eclecticism of the region’s literary talents. Eight writers come together in a special anniversary reading, sharing their contributions to a fascinating, multilingual, multi-cultural canon.


Nha Thuyen


Nhã Thuyên writes, translates, edits and organises literary events. She has written several books of poetry, short fiction, and children’s books. Her most recent poetry collection, words breathe, creatures of elsewhere (từ thở, những người lạ) was published in Vietnamese in 2015 and in English translation by Kaitlin Rees in 2016. With Kaitlin, she co-edits AJAR, a bilingual journal and small press in Hanoi. She is currently working on a book of essays on marginalisation in Vietnamese contemporary poetry.

Nha Thuyen is featured in the following SWF event(s):
Han Lynn


Han Lynn is a poet and translator from Myanmar. He has published three poetry collections in Burmese, the latest being Para (2015). His poems have appeared in journals in Myanmar and abroad, and have been translated into English and Bengali. He has taken part in residencies and festivals in Germany, Malaysia, South Africa and Zimbabwe. In 2016, he co-founded Be Untexed, the first international arts and literary journal from Myanmar, and in April co-hosted an international arts festival in Yangon. 

Han Lynn is featured in the following SWF event(s):

Dokked is the pen name of Laotian writer Douangeduane Bounyavong. She is a researcher of Lao textiles and a scholar of classical Lao literature. She also promotes literacy through her publishing company, Dokked Publishing, which has a not-for-profit publishing project to make books more accessible in rural Laos. She won the SEA Write Award in 2006 and the Fukuoka Arts and Culture Prize in 2005. 

Dokked is featured in the following SWF event(s):

Ngarmpun Vejjajiva, also known as Jane, was born in 1963 in London. Having cerebral palsy that limits her movements, she finds comfort in books, which open to her an imaginary world. She studied French literature at Thammasat University and French, English and Italian translation in Brussels. After a career in magazines, she now runs copyright agency Silkroad Publishers Agency, and also works as a translator. Her first novel, The Happiness of Kati (2003), won the SEA Write Award in 2006.

Jane Vejjajiva is featured in the following SWF event(s):
Fahd Pahdepie


Berusia 30 tahun, Fahd adalah seorang penulis ulung yang telah menerbitkan 20 buah buku dalam pelbagai genre. Seorang yang menggelar dirinya 'authorpreneur', beliau adalah pengasas, sebuah platform dalam talian yang menampilkan karya penulis, pereka, jurugambar, videografer dan ahli kreatif lain, serta, sebuah agensi yang menyediakan perkhidmatan media sosial untuk institusi kerajaan, ahli politik dan juga syarikat-syarikat. Fahd menerima Anugerah Alumni Muda Cemerlang di Anugerah Australia 2017 di Indonesia, yang disampaikan oleh Kerajaan Australia.


At the age of 30, Fahd is already an accomplished writer, having published 20 books in multiple genres. The self-described ‘authorpreneur’ is the founder of, an online platform to showcase the work of writers, designers, photographers, videographers and other creatives, as well as of, an agency that provides social media services for government institutions, politicians and companies. Fahd received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award of the 2017 Australia Awards in Indonesia, presented by the Australian Government.

Fahd Pahdepie is featured in the following SWF event(s):

Josephine Chia loves to write and has written both fiction and non-fiction. Her writing explores the worlds she knows best: her kampong days, Peranakan heritage, food, and yoga. She weaves these and Singapore’s history into her stories. Josephine has authored nine books, and the sequel to Kampong Spirit, her 2014 Singapore Literature Prize-winning book, will be released soon. She has won literary awards in the UK and Singapore, and has spoken at several international writing festivals.

Josephine Chia is featured in the following SWF event(s):

Zahid M Naser adalah seorang penyair, penterjemah sastera dan bekas wartawan politik dari Malaysia. Karya puisinya, Berehat Di Sisi Paus, diterbitkan pada tahun 2016. Puisi beliau juga muncul dalam jurnal Naratif | Kisah dan majalah dalam talian dan Seorang lulusan Universiti Al-Azhar di Kaherah, beliau telah menterjemahkan kesusasteraan dari bahasa Arab ke bahasa Melayu, termasuk puisi karya Mahmoud Darwish dan Nizar Qabbani.

Zahid M Naser is a poet, literary translator, and former political journalist from Malaysia. His debut volume of poetry, Berehat Di Sisi Paus, was published in 2016. His poems have also appeared in the journal Naratif | Kisah and the online magazines and A graduate of Al-Azhar University in Cairo, he translates literature from Arabic to Malay, including poems by Mahmoud Darwish and Nizar Qabbani.

Zahid M. Naser is featured in the following SWF event(s):

Dean Francis Alfar (Philippines) is a novelist, playwright, anthologist, and advocate of Speculative Fiction. His books include Salamanca, The Kite of Stars and Other Stories, and A Field Guide to the Roads of Manila. His short fiction has been published in his home country as well as in international markets. Alfar is the publisher of the annual “Philippine Speculative Fiction” volumes, and edits the “Maximum Volume: Best New Philippine Fiction” series.

Dean Francis Alfar is featured in the following SWF event(s):


Sastera Sebagai Advokasi

11 Nov, Sat 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM
The Arts House, Living Room

How Writers Can Save the Earth

11 Nov, Sat 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
HideOut@Funan Showsuite, Junction of High Street and Hill Street

ASEAN 50: Can We Get The World To Read Us?

12 Nov, Sun 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
The Arts House, Play Den