Alfian Bin Sa'at

          Alfian Bin Sa'at is a writer of poetry, fiction and plays whose areas of interest include theatre (English and Malay), literature (including the writings of Arthur Yap, Chairil Anwar, Czeslaw Milosz, Zbigniew Herbert, Wislawa Szymborska, Miroslav Holub, Adrienne Rich, Rainer Maria Rilke, Carolyn Forche), as well as critical writings on the arts.

            He has written plays for The Necessary Stage--Black Boards, White Walls, (1997) and sex.violence.blood.gore (1999) and Teater Ekamatra--Dongeng and Deklamasi Malas (1997), Causeway, Madu II, and Anak Bulan Di Kampung Wak Hassan (1998). He has also translated into Malay Ng Xin Yue's original Mandarin text of 'My Mother's Wooden Chest' from Kuo Pao Kun's English translation--Peti Kayu Ibuku (1999). He has had two books published, 'One Fierce Hour', a poetry collection (Landmark Books, 1998), and 'Corridor', a collection of short stories (Singapore Literature Prize Commendation Award 1998; SNP, 1999). He has also spent a year writing freelance theatre reviews for The Straits Times' Life! theatre desk. He is a member of the medical profession.

            Through his work with The Necessary Stage, he has always been interested in engaging with and negotiating within socio-political spaces, and deconstructing gender, national, ethnic and class identities and fictions. He is also interested in exploring the positionality of a minority writer/artist in Singapore, specifically that of the Malay writer writing in English. A few projects he will be pursuing in 2000 are: translating the poetry of Mohd Rafaat Hamzah into English, a collaborative web-based project called 'Geograffiti' with Heman Chong and Hanin Zainomum, about the fictionalising of Singaporean spaces/places, as well as preparing a new manuscript of poetry entitled 'A History of Amnesia'--based on ahistoricity, memory, and the oppositional strategies of micro-narratives against grand totalitizing narratives. In addition, he is interested in exploring the theory of micro-politics in art, what the poet Carla Harryman describes as 'the game of minute resistance.'