Empowering Words of
R.A Kartini:
A Compilation of Inspiring Quotes from Indonesia's National Heroine

Raden Ajeng Kartini Djojo Adhiningrat, or simply R.A Kartini, was a Javanese noblewoman who lived from 1879 to 1904. In Indonesia, she is revered as a national hero for her advocacy of women’s rights and education, as well as her pioneering role in the Southeast Asian women’s movement.

R.A Kartini was born into an aristocratic Javanese family in the Jepara regency in Central Java, Indonesia. It was the time when Indonesian women had little access to formal education and were largely confined to the home. However, R.A Kartini’s father, a progressive-minded man, allowed her and her sisters to receive a rudimentary education at home. She was able to learn about the wider world outside of Indonesia through correspondence with R.A Kartini’s father and her Dutch friends.

R.A Kartini was still bound by the strict customs of Javanese society despite her education. During her childhood, she was tethered to a nobleman, a common practice among the Javanese aristocracy. She was aware of the limitations of her situation and dreamed of a different life for herself and for women in Indonesia.

In her letters, which have been collected and published, R.A Kartini expressed her thoughts and aspirations for women’s education and rights. She believed that women should have the right to an education and that this education should prepare them for their roles as wives, mothers, and members of society. She also argued that women should have the right to choose their own partners and to be treated as equal to men in all aspects of life.

R.A Kartini’s advocacy for women’s rights and education was groundbreaking at the time and continues to inspire women’s movements around the world today. Her letters were widely read and sparked a national conversation about the role of women in Indonesian society.

It goes without saying that R.A Kartini is famous for her words, including “After Darkness, Comes Light”. Here are the most famous words that inspired most people in the nation. Some of them may often be used as a reminder for us. Therefore, Kartini Day is held as a reminder for us to remember her legacy.

R.A Kartini’s most famous quotes:

  1. Do you know my motto? I want to! Those two succinct words have supported me several times and have brought me across the mountain of objections and tribulations, saying I can not eliminate boldness, the words I want to make it easy to climb the top of the mountain.

    “Rather than waiting for things to happen, R.A Kartini encourages people to take action and pursue their dreams. It is a reminder that success often requires hard work and perseverance, but with the right mindset and attitude, we can overcome any challenge and reach the top of the mountain.

  2. No matter what, women’s progress will always be an important factor in the civilization of a nation.

    “R.A Kartini emphasizes the significant role that women’s progress plays in the development and advancement of a nation. It suggests that no matter what challenges a nation faces, the progress and empowerment of women are essential for the growth and success of the society as a whole.

  3. The most important thing for women is to be able to think for themselves and to have the courage to speak out.”

    R.A Kartini emphasizes the importance of women’s autonomy and empowerment. R.A Kartini believed that women should be able to think for themselves and have the courage to express their thoughts and ideas. She recognized that many women in her time were not given the opportunity to develop their own ideas and were discouraged from speaking up for themselve

  4. A woman whose mind has been educated and whose perspective has been broadened will no longer be able to live within the world of her ancestors.”

    R.A Kartini describes that when a woman’s mind is opened up through education and her perspective is broadened, she may find it difficult to continue living within the narrow confines of traditional beliefs and customs passed down from her ancestors. Instead, she may seek to challenge those beliefs and customs and strive for a more progressive and enlightened society.

  5. Sometimes, the difficulty should you felt first before the perfect happiness comes to you.

    Sometimes we need to face and overcome difficulties and challenges before we can achieve true happiness and fulfillment. It suggests that the road to happiness may not always be easy and may require perseverance, resilience, and the ability to overcome obstacles. This idea is in line with R.A Kartini’s belief in the importance of education, empowerment, and self-determination in achieving personal and societal growth.

  6. Many things can bring you down. But the only thing that truly brings you down is your own attitude.”

    R.A Kartini emphasizes the importance of personal growth and self-determination. While external factors or events may present challenges or difficulties in life, it is ultimately our own mindset and attitude that determines our ability to overcome them. It highlights the importance of cultivating a positive and resilient attitude toward life, and taking responsibility for one’s own actions and reactions in the face of adversity.

  7. Keep dreaming, keep dreaming, make your dream as long as you can dream! If you don’t dream, will you live? Real life is cruel.”

    The quote suggests that having dreams and aspirations is important in life, as they give us something to strive for and make life worth living. Without dreams, life may feel meaningless and mundane. The reality of life, however, can be harsh and difficult to pursue your dreams, and it does not always work out that way.

  8. Never give up if you still want to try. Do not let regret come because you’re one step away from winning.

    R.A Kartini encourages persistence and resilience in the face of obstacles or setbacks. It suggests that if you still have the desire to achieve something, you should not give up easily, even if you encounter challenges along the way. The statement implies that success may be just one step away, and by giving up too soon, you may miss out on achieving your goal and end up with regret

It was R.A Kartini’s determination to fight for women’s emancipation that enabled her to break down perceptions about Indonesian women at that time. The social environment R.A Kartini grew up in influenced her thinking about education as a tool for advancing a nation. It is through knowledge that a person can achieve happiness.

R.A Kartini was a visionary leader who fought for women’s rights and empowerment in Indonesia during the colonial era. Her inspiring words continue to resonate today, as her message of education and equality for women remains relevant in the modern world. Through her quotes, she inspires us to take action toward creating a more just and equitable society, where women are given the opportunity to reach their full potential and contribute to the progress of their communities. Our commitment to gender equality is strengthened by R.A Kartini’s legacy, reminding us that women’s rights are ongoing and must be pursued.

Foto Profil Farhan


A professional writer who loves to write for people’s needs. It can be anything as long as it stays to give people information and knowledge. He aims to change every people into a knowledgeable person. With that goal in mind, every writing counts as the medium. “Knowledge exists in many forms in this world. Some are contained in books, some are found in nature.”

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