Birth of Soe Hok Gie

66 years ago today, Indonesian activist Soe Hok Gie was born.

Rabu, 17 Desember 2008, 00:02 Ramona Sofianne Dewi
Soe Hok Gie
Soe Hok Gie (www.astacala.org)

VIVAnews - 66 years ago today, on 17 December 1942, Soe Hok Gie was born. He was a student of Chinese descent who was actively involved in a series of demonstrations against President Soekarno from 1965 through 1966.

After graduating from high school in 1962, Gie became enrolled at the University of Indonesia (UI). Seven years later he graduated and became a lecturer at his alma mater.

Gie was an active writer. His writings were published in several national newspapers. He was a naturalist and helped co-found Mapala UI, an organization for students who loved nature and hiking.

After Soekarno's collapse and when Soeharto took over the government, Gie criticized many of his fellow activists whom, after graduating, turned to be as corrupt as the bureaucrats they criticized while still in the university.

Soe Hok Gie died on 16 December 1969, after accidentally inhaling a poisonous gas while he was hiking in Mount Semeru. He died just hours before his 27 birthday.

Later, in 1983, his diary was published under the title of “Catatan Seorang Demonstran” (The Diary of a Protester). Gie’s diary inspired a 2005 movie called “Gie” that pictured his short yet colorful life.

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