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In 1953 Pramoedya left Indonesia for a period of residency in the Netherlands, under the auspices of the Dutch Foundation for Cultural Cooperation (sticusa). This residency failed to engender the goodwill it was designed to foster toward the former colonial power, and Pramoedya returned to Indonesia after only six months, accusing the Foundation of harboring neocolonial ambitions. This experience, along with a dispute over copyright with Sutan Takdir Alisjahbana, a key figure among the group of pro-Western Indonesian writers and intellectuals with whom Wright associated in 1955, may help explain why there is no documentary record of any personal encounter between Wright and Pramoedya during Wright’s visit. The absence of a meeting between the two men is otherwise surprising, in view of Pramoedya’s admiration for Wright’s work, which is also alluded to in this newspaper article.

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