The Ruling Passion: a comic story of the sixteenth century V3

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The ruling passion : a comic story of the sixteenth century

Radio Plays. The Lancaster Plays. Weird Music. Wealth was often measured in control over subjects, in sexual access to lovely females, in the possession of magical powers and in physical prowess. At the same time, material riches were attended with a sense of evil, impurity or corruption. The wayang comics and legendary tales of old Java produced by Kosasih in the s and later by such comic book masters as Teguh Santosa and Jan Mintaraga were set in the opulence of royal worlds of the mythological or pre-colonial past.

While wayang and legendary comics do illustrate a sense of prosperity in ancient kingdoms, such luxury serves more as a backdrop than as a point of thematic concern within the narrative. These classic comics are based on court tales of the pre-colonial past, and conformed to the propagandistic desires of ruling elites.

the ruling passion a comic story of the sixteenth century v3 Manual

Heroes of common origins are most rare in the palace tradition, as are intimate views of the lives of commoners. Like the classic stories, the modern romantic comics of the New Order era, written by such authors as Zaldy, Jeffrey or Jan Mintaraga, are set in pen and ink worlds defined visually by opulent features.

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This is a melodramatic popular literature of escape and erasure, oriented towards a predominantly young female audience with upward mobile aspirations. There is no sense of surrounding poverty, nor are there significant markers of locality such as traditional markets or wandering sellers of bakso or baskets of fruit. Traditional forms of dress are entirely absent. Instead readers are served up hermetic worlds of fabricated modernity divorced from the realities of Java in the late s. These tearjerker romances are so starkly and generically cosmopolitan that with a few tweaks they could be set in any modern city in the world.

It is in the genre of martial arts comics that the money and the behaviour of the rich are directly caricatured in an unvaryingly negative light. In a significant number of silat stories, money, materialism and the self-interested exercise of authority over others are linked to lust, greed, and tyrannical behaviour. Within the silat world the currency of true power is martial valour. Although rich villains can surround themselves with powerful, amoral mercenaries intent on steady employment and full rice bowls, the indomitable heroes of these tales rise to heights of supernatural martial attainment through myriad forms of asceticism, harsh discipline and a cultivated lack of pamrih or self-interest.

The Ruling Passion, Vol. 2 of 3: A Comic Story of the Sixteenth Century (Classic Reprint)

The political orders of the silat jungle can be likened to thugocracies, where might makes right, and the powerful are depicted as leeches upon the land and people of the archipelago. Pendekar are homespun heroes, simple men and women unencumbered by lofty ambitions or material trappings. Survival through skill in silat is thus an alternate construction of ultimate wealth in this narrative tradition. The creation of the silat comic genre is commonly credited to the late Ganes TH. Barda Mandrawata, the hero of this famous serial, intentionally blinds himself in order to attain the supersensory ilmu or magical science required to attain vengeance against the murderer of his family, Si Mata Malaikat Angel Eyes.

In subsequent tales he wanders the archipelago redressing evil wherever he finds it and aiding the weak and oppressed. Dutch colonial greed and wickedness are the subject of the short silat serial entitled Leonard Van Eisen by the highly regarded comic author Djair.

Dutch physiognomy and attitudes regarding native land rights are sharply lampooned in this story of karmic consequence. The greedy and lascivious members of the Van Eisen clan meet horribly violent deaths at the hands of Javanese silat freedom fighters. Si Pitung Macan Betaw i Pitung the Tiger of Batavia by AS Daniel is a single volume comic that recounts the exploits of Pitung, the colonial era West Javanese silat fighter whose life-story later inspired the establishment of a museum in Jakarta.

In this Batavian Robin Hood story a silat adept uses his skills to torment the oppressor and aid the poor. A humble goatherd enjoying a close relationship with the kyai of a local pesantren, Pitung falls afoul of the colonial authorities and the local landowners when he resorts to banditry to sustain the downtrodden. He foils the landowner's rape attempt and stabs him to death.

In Gitanjali he created a romantic tale of a doomed treasure hunt set in Java circa This adventure centres on the figure of Gitanjali, a gorgeous Javanese-born concubine from the court of Raja Ravi Shankar of Bihar in India who has fled the clutches of her lascivious master. She returns to Java to seek out an accursed treasure of looted Inca gold lost with a Portuguese ship that sank near Karimun Island off Java's north coast in the sixteenth century. Employing a map tattooed on her thigh, Gitanjali leads a rabble of competing warriors — Javanese, Indian and Dutch — on a race to the sunken gold.

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Devoured by sharks, stabbed and shot to death, or blown to smithereens, all those who strive to possess the gold, including Gitanjali, meet bad ends. Here the wages of avarice are, once again, early death.

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The silat comic book fictions of the New Order provided a medium for euphemistic but critical social commentary. Being set in pre-revolutionary times helped them pass the scrutiny of military censors. Amongst the hundreds of titles published in those days are graphic novels beloved by generations of comic book enthusiasts, past and present.

They are iconic achievements in the medium, deploying their own cultural grammar. admin