Genderuwo or Genderuwa is a mythical creature from Java, Indonesia. It is described as reddish or black skinned hairy humanoid with large and muscular body. Within Javanese mythology this creature is said to be supernatural in nature with the ability to disappear and appear at will or transform into human.
Genderuwo is described generally as a muscular hairy humanoid with reddish black skin and bulging eyes. But because of its supernatural ability, it may appear at first as hairy dwarf humanoid, but can transform quickly into gigantic humanoid when approached by human. It is also said to have the ability to communicate with humans and even transform into human to trick us. It is said that Genderuwo possess magnificent sex drive and hypnotic skill, they seduce women by transforming into their husbands and inhabit the female's uterus to gain sexual satisfaction for both itself and the women it inhabit, it can even produce human-genderuwo hybrid from this relationship. Because of this VICE described genderuwo as "great grandaddy" of obscure monster erotica genre which inspired abominations like Cum for Bigfoot.
Genderuwo is said to be seen all over Java island. If you asked any Javanese villager chance are they might've seen one. Genderuwo form colonies on various forests and mountains within Java, but they also can be found individually hiding on huge trees or bamboo forest near human habitation. Just like the other ghosts found in Indonesia they can also inhabit dark and humid places like abandoned buildings.
Genderuwo are sighted all over Java, but nobody cared enough to document them, most people are aware of where they might appear or live, and move on with their lives. But some stories still appear on television and internet. Genderuwo is one of the ghosts noted on the De Javaansche Geestenwereld by H.A. van Hien published in 1897 during the Dutch colonization of Indonesia.
- https://historia.id/kultur/articles/genderuwo-yang-suka-menakut-nakuti-Dpw3l (In Indonesian)
- De Javaansche Geestenwereld by H.A. van Hien, 1897 (In Dutch)
- The Religion of Java by Clifford Geertz, 1976
- Dunia Mistik Orang Jawa: Roh, Ritual, Benda Magis by Suyono, 2007 (In Indonesian)
In Popular Culture
- Genderuwo appeared on the Indonesian horror game DreadOut
- Genderuwo appeared on HBO Asia series Halfworlds