our thoughts are free



Our Thoughts Are Free

Poems and Prose on Imprisonment and Exile

SIRD Publishing and Ethos Books (Singapore) jointly invites you to a Book Launch, “Our Thoughts Are Free: Poems and Prose on Imprisonment and Exile” edited by Tan Jing Quee, Teo Soh Lung & Koh Kay Yew.

[Update on 21 may 2009: you can read some observations from a participant at the reading here].

The launch will be followed by talks and a poetry reading session. This very special event will be attended by, and bring together many ex-political detainees across different decades from Malaysia and Singapore. They will share their life testimonies and thoughts resulting from political suppression from both countries. The audience will include social and political activists, bloggers and activists from NGOs.

Date : 16th May 2009 (Saturday)Time : 3.00pm – 5.30pmVenue : The Annexe Gallery, 2nd Floor, Central Market Annexe, Jalan Hang Kasturi, 50470 Kuala Lumpur.

OUR THOUGHTS ARE FREE is a collection of poems and prose from a group of six former ISA (Internal Security Act) political prisoners and exiles, mainly from Singapore.

They are Said Zahari, Ho Piao, Tan Jing Quee, Teo Soh Lung, Wong Souk Yee and Francis Khoo.

The poems and prose give a different perspective to a little known part of Singapore’s political climate and state of un-freedom. The book is also a record of survival; of those who used words to open doors and windows to connect with a world denied them.

All are welcome. Please feel free to circulate this notice.

For further details please contact Ms Lee Siew Hwa at 03-79578342/8343 or 016-4655107 and Mr Chong Ton Sin at  016-379 7231.

3.00 pm Guests arrive
3.10 pm Guests seated. Publisher introduces title
3.12 pm 12-min video on ISA, Singapore Francis Khoo shares Said Zahari shares
3.55 pm Readings begin (13 poems & 1 prose/skit)
4.30 pm Discussion and Q&A session with editors
4.50 pm Tea, chit-chat and book signing
5.30 pm Retire to a good read

Strategic Information and Research Development Centre (SIRD)11 Lorong 11/4E, 46200 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.
Tel: +603-7957 8342/8343 Fax: +603-7954 9202
Email: sird@streamyx.com or gerakbudaya@pd.jaring.my
Website: www.gerakbudaya.com
; www.ethosbooks.com.org

17 responses »

  1. hassan says:

    hi aba kaber

  2. gabrielspeaks says:

    Bold and insightful post; The authors clarity on the issue of situation with ethics
    and truth it brings to bear on the prospects for the future give us all reason for hope. The question is: Are people ready to hear the good news yet? I for one AM!

    Way to go, we’ re all behind you, and were all in this together.

  3. carew says:

    The Home Ministry or Kementarian Dalam Negeri (KDN) has the power to ban books that it feels are in some way “detrimental to public order” or liable in some way to”contribute to immorality”.

    But, it seems, there are two different systems of banning and you need to understand the difference between them.


  4. jariullah says:

    Please help us for fight this injustice in Selangor, Malaysia

    Pls forward and promote this youtube video clip


    Jariullah Ahmad
    Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat of Malaysia

  5. Kancilandak says:

    With due respect to Susan and freedom of expresion. If my thot are free than I can share with evrybody.

    I think Pkr is a weak party. Look at Kelantan the leaders kunyah sireh and easy and there no man in Kelantan, all go to S’pore to work and running round other state when woman stey home suffer.
    Guan Eng in Penang cannot tally the account book give him by Tsu koon and scratchy his head.
    Nizar bang his head on BN wall and resting under rainforest tree like Buddha.
    Kedah all diam diam then suddeny becous V.Arumugam got two wife fighting he abadon Bkt Selambau and run away to India. Khalid Samad dont know where got so many cow give free to Selangor people, Bkt Lanjan problom streaker girl, and a MP who only sassy.
    If my thougt are free than I use them explen to people what I think the right. The right is chase PKr out of politik for good.

  6. ainol_hasanal says:

    Let May 7 become new May 13

    ”Let us exorcise the spectre of May 13 and replace it with the May 7 image of Speaker V. Sivakumar being forcibly dragged out by Umno’s police,” the veteran politician told an overflowing civic centre crowd here last night.

    “This is the image that frightens Umno and Barisan Nasional so much that they have banned television stations from playing the video footage of the legitimate Perak speaker being dragged out of the assembly.”

    The ban he referred to was apparently given to Media Prima, the group which controls the country’s four free-to-air private TV stations — TV3, NTV7, 8TV and TV9 — on the evening of May 7.


  7. kutumalaysia says:

    Dear kancilandak,
    All those issues that you have raised are ‘petty’, frivolous and can be solved given enough time and resources. Unfortunately other bigger issues such as rampant corruption, abuse of power, constitutional crisis, election fraud, human rights, judiciary, police force etc etc (the list can be very long) needs to be corrected.
    It is very sad for Malaysia and the rakyat, if people like you still refuse to look at bigger issues and take pot shots at non-issues.
    Dont you for a second thought of how our children and their children would eventually inherited the doings of our current leaders.
    What kind of future do you think they will endure when we leave a country and a system that is in shamble.
    Please wake up to the realities for the sake of this nation!

  8. kittykat46 says:

    Looks good.
    I hope it will be available at mainstream bookshops.

    The odd thing I noticed is you can get frank sociopolitical commentary about Singapore – in Malaysia, and commentary about Malaysia – in Singapore.
    But very rarely do such books get pass the censors in the other country.

  9. tebing tinggi says:

    our thoughts are free but our expression are not.
    when we say this normally the focous is with the authority or to be more specific the goverment. most of the time we the beliver of free thought and expression are not beliver in reciving others thought and expression.
    its very common in every parts of the world we heare people are demanding this two basic human rights but at the same time not willing to give that rights in the area where they are in
    i am getting confused !.

  10. Leprosy says:

    BN/Umno over 51 years is leprous now,without cure or correction.
    Just too many to mention all it’s failures,mistakes,aggression,suppression,oppression,cover-ups,manipulation,ridiculous leadership,corruption,unfair treatment,racialism,injustices,greed and selfish leadership,murderous records,violence,intimidation and the list goes on.

    Maybe , someone should write about all these and highlight to the people clearly before it is terminated permanently, so that at least people know why it ‘died’ with a terminal disease in the end.

  11. Moideen says:

    To the Ahmadiyya people of Malaysia.

    For your info, Hasan Ali is a traitor to PR govt. He is trying to get a lateral transfer to BN, either as a MB or Fed Minister. This guy is now working for UMNO to destroy the PR so I hope the Ahmadiyya fellas understand and not get angry with PR.

    Hasan Ali is a great opportunist who was once in BTN in the PM’s dept. If he joined UMNO then, he might just be a AJK Bahagian only now. But in 1998, he saw his opportunity to rise in PAS and capitalised on it. Now he is negotiating a lateral transfer (short cut).

    I hope PAS and PR people should know this devil in disguise. Another traitor friend of his is Zul Nordin of PKR.

  12. Kecilandak, the latest nick of Idzan Ismail says:

    It’s a great book. I should read it. Pity that I am unable to attend the launching as I am far from KL.

  13. Menyalak-er says:

    Well in porcupined mousedeer, kancilandak is free to air it’s free opinion/thoughts. It’s quite frozen and moving at glacial speed and while carving out great chunks of icebergs.
    Freedom of thought is quite different from “our thoughts are free”, don’t you think?

  14. bee yong says:

    Thoughts are free
    Actions are not
    Habit can be expensive
    Character is unique
    Destiny is ‘one and only’…..
    So take care of your thoughts, although they may be free.
    Live well…Be well

  15. subra says:

    An old kampung imam had a teenage son, and it was getting time the boy should give some thought to choosing a profession. Like many young men his age, the boy didn’t really know what he wanted to do, and he didn’t seem too concerned about it. One day, while the boy was away at school, his father decided to try an experiment. He went into the boy’s room and placed on his study table four objects.

    1. The Holy Book.
    2. A fifty ringgit note.
    3. A bottle of whiskey.
    4. And a Playboy magazine

    ‘I’ll just hide behind the door,” the old imam said to himself. “When he comes home from school today, I’ll see which object he picks up.” “If it’s the holy book, he’s going to be an imam like me, an what a blessing that would be!” “If he picks up the fifty ringgit note, he’s going to be a business man, and that would be okay, too.” But if he picks up the bottle, he’s going to be a no-good drunken bum, and God, what a shame that would be.” “And worst of all if he picks up that magazine he’s going to be a skirt-chasing womanizer.” The old man waited anxiously, and soon heard his son’s foot-steps as he entered the house whistling and heading for his room..

    The boy tossed his books on the bed, and as he turned to leave the room he spotted the objects on the table.

    With curiosity in his eye, he walked over to inspect them. Finally, he picked up the Holy Book and placed it under his arm. He picked up the fifty ringgit note and dropped into his pocket. He uncorked the bottle and took a big drink, while he admired the magazine’s centerfold.

    “God have mercy,” the old imam disgustedly whispered. “He’s gonna run for Majlis Tertinggi UMNO.”

  16. merciless*iridium says:

    is that hassan ali fler with the white hair that wears a songkok most of the time? he dons a pair of rimless glasses as well? ah. i see. i have seen him with this group of guys at the kari kepala ikan in kampung pandan about a week ago.

    he was about to enter a silver coloured mercedes benz s class. if i am not mistaken, the number plate is WRH 717. he was with some cute officials, holier than thou outfit.

    my personal experience is not with hassan but with his brother, baharuddin ali. my ex syariah lawyer who acted for me as my solicitor in my divorce case and also a backstabber. guess what he did? he forwarded my sms sent to him to my ex wife. thats breach right?

    good piece of advice. dont go near ali’s children. ali himself is a defiant man, just like his 2 children, WORST!

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