Last night (November 19th) Ursula Le Guin accepted the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. 'I think hard times are coming', she said in her acceptance speech, ' when we will be wanting the voices of writers who can see alternatives to how
Of all the jargon words that get thrown around in British political discourse, "faith" may be the one from which I feel most alienated. If you listen to politicians, "faith" seems to be a nebulous goodness, a state of mind that leads citizens to behave in certain convenient ways. The faithful
'Formally “10:04” belongs to an emerging genre, the novel after Sebald, its 19th-century furniture of plot and character dissolved into a series of passages, held together by occasional photographs and a subjectivity that hovers close to (but is never quite identical with) the subjectivity of
[This text was written for the Camden Arts Centre's Exhibition: 'We at Camden Arts Centre are Exceedingly Proud to Present an Exhibition of Capable Artworks by the Notable Hand of the Celebrated American, Kara Elizabeth Walker, Negress.' up from
'For this displaced member of the Nigerian elite, Lagos is the opposite of an open city. His decision to leave, to make himself a cosmopolitan, in other words to have aerials instead of roots, has closed it off definitively.'
In June, I gave a keynote at 'Writing in the Digital Age' at the Free Word Centre in London. I spoke about how new technologies are not just changing how writers market themselves, sell books or relate to the reader, but the possibilities of fiction itself.
On Friday, over lunch, I heard the news that Salman Rushdie would not be attending the Jaipur Literature Festival. His visit had been in doubt for some time. Initially, we had been scheduled to have a conversation on stage that afternoon, but since Maulana Abul Qasim Nomani, the head of the