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In writing the memoir of a friend’s girlhood in Java during WWII, author Sally Brandle was challenged by disturbing truths about privilege and oppression, as well as contradictions in historical accounts, depending on the perspective.
Sally has shared strategies for encouraging recall of memories and events when writing or ghost-writing a memoir, then recounts the fascinating life of a girl uncomfortable with her mixed-race heritage, caught in the tragedy of wartime in the Pacific Theater. The story raises complex questions of race, privilege, politics, and social justice - questions that are as relevant today as they were during 1930s Dutch colonial rule of Java, Indonesia, and the ensuing Japanese occupation during WWII.
In recognition of Pearl Harbor Day, author Sally Brandle discussed her WWII memoir Sapphire Promise featuring a Dutch-American nurse recounting six years in her life, beginning in 1939 colonial Batavia, Indonesia; through her idyllic, teenaged years of horseback riding with her pet monkey; and how falling in love imploded on December 7, 1941.
The Indo Project featured Sapphire Promise and showcased an interview Iris and Sally.
For Sapphire Promise lovers, The Indo Project link to their story is located on the website here.
The Pioneer's article about Sally Brandle's book signing for Sapphire Promise