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from the January 2020 issue

On International Literature and Travel

This month, we’re engaging one of the more pressing questions facing the literary sphere. Reading, it is commonly averred, can make us better versions of ourselves. Without ceding that notion, we ask a different version of it: can international literature make us better travelers?

Our debate includes contributions from four writers who bring wildly different perspectives: M. Lynx Qualey writes about Arabic literature and translation issues; Tomaso Biancardi is an Italian editor and literary translator living in Istanbul; Emmanuel Iduma is a Nigerian writer, editor, publisher, and art critic; and Shahnaz Habib is a US-based Indian writer and translator. Together, they invite us to question our roles as readers, writers, translators, and editors, and perhaps even help us to begin to arrive at an answer to our question.

The Editors


Can international literature make us better travelers?

The Desire to Travel Responsibly Must Come before the Desire to Learn through Literature
by Tomaso Biancardi
We Usually Ask Literature to be Humanizing Only When It’s from "Over There"
by M. Lynx Qualey
The Reader's Openness to the Unfamiliar
by Emmanuel Iduma
On the "Good" in "Good Traveler"
by Shahnaz Habib




Read more from the January 2020 issue
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