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By Susheila Nasta

Writing throughout Worlds brings jointly a variety of interviews with significant overseas writers formerly featured within the pages of the journal. performed by means of a large constituency of wonderful critics, writers and newshounds, the interviews provide a special perception into the perspectives and paintings of a extraordinary array of acclaimed authors. additionally they chart a gradual yet convinced cultural shift: these as soon as obvious as 'other' haven't merely gained a few of the establishment's so much respected literary prizes yet have additionally turn into relevant figures in modern literature, writing throughout and into all our genuine and imagined worlds. With an introductory remark by means of Susheila Nasta, editor of Wasafiri, this assortment is key analyzing for all these attracted to modern literature. Authors interviewed contain: Chinua Achebe, Ama Ata Aidoo, Monica Ali, Amit Chaudhuri, David Dabydeen, Bernadine Evaristo, Maggie Gee, Lorna Goodison, Nadine Gordimer, Abdulrazak Gurnah, Wilson Harris, Keri Hulme, Kazuo Ishiguro, Jackie Kay, Jamaica Kincaid, Maxine Hong Kingston, George Lamming, Rohinton Mistry, V.S. Naipaul, Ngugi wa Thiong'o, Michael Ondaatje, Caryl Phillips, Joan Riley, Salman Rushdie, Nayantara Sahgal, Sam Selvon, Vikram Seth, Zadie Smith, Wole Soyinka, Moyez Vassanji, Marina Warner.

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Does it ever worry you that a lot of your meaning is sure to elude the grasp of the ordinary reader? Ah, but my favourite answer to that is this [pointing to a corner of the office]. Look at that carving on the wall there, that sculpture. It is an African mask. On one level I appreciate it as an aesthetic object. The pastel shades, I think, are nicely balanced. I like the forms, I like the combination of the forms, even the elevation of the mask. I think it is sufficient aesthetic reward. Well, my appreciation of it is further enhanced by the fact that I actually can see it in motion, I know how it is worn.

Sam Selvon died in 1994 on a trip ‘home’ to Trinidad. 2 Wole Soyinka with Mary David Since his first emphatic emergence on the literary scene in Nigeria in 1960 – the year of the nation’s independence – Wole Soyinka has successfully combined the roles of dramatist, actor, director, novelist, poet, memorialist, critic and agent provocateur. His policy of deliberate non-alignment during the Civil War of 1966–71 landed him in prison for several months in Kaduna and Lagos, an experience that he described in his memoir The Man Died (1972), and he has since maintained an unremitting resistance to the corruption and oppression of a number of regimes.

I’m not closely acquainted with a lot of those poems! I Am Becoming My Mother is a totally different thing because I was much more focused on the poems and a lot of them have to do with writing down things which I knew had to be written about. But towards the end of each book I began to see a certain kind of movement . . you know, those little poems towards the end of Tamarind Season about you owe me a walk in the rain . . it was a crying out to something much bigger – it wasn’t strictly this very ordinary plane any more.

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