Each night, 20-year-old stunt-rider Devi Apriliyani rides "Satan's Barrel" as her husband and daughter look on. An already controversial act in socially conservative Indonesia, one fact complicates matters further – she is pregnant.
By Agues Rudianto
17 Jan 2020
"I want to be different, I want to show that women can also work [in dangerous jobs] like men. Not all men can and dare to work like this"
Having started stunt-riding three years ago, inspired by her step-brother, Devi pursues her fortune challenging death each evening at night markets set up around the nation with her travelling carnival. She sometimes does 300 shows a month, putting her life at stake for meagre but essential sums as her husband, Ahmad Herdiansyah Daulay, and two-year-old daughter watch on.
Devi regularly swaps between carnivals, working a one-month contract here, then later moving to another carnival. In contrast to the resistance felt in her home community, as a female stunt-rider she is in hot demand in the industry – both with the companies who hire her and the carnivals that showcase her.
Working as a “jockey”, the name given to stunt-riders, Devi gets paid a flat rate in the region of 4,000,000 rupiah ($280) per month. In one of the few instances in which the gender pay gap has worked in favour of women, Devi says this is often twice as much as her male counterparts earn.