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The Ungrateful Refugee

Dina Nayeri

‘I was born in 1979, a year of revolution, and grew up in wartime.’ Dina Nayeri on growing up in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Binyavanga Wainaina

Sigrid Rausing

Granta's editor Sigrid Rausing remembers Binyavanga Wainaina.

Four Poems

Mark Waldron

‘Just look at those nasty trees flaunt / their leaves, each one a tra-la-la.’

Zanele Muholi: Somnyama Ngonyama, Hail the Dark Lioness

Zanele Muholi & Anne McNeill

‘Zanele Muholi is a photographer, often described as one of the most powerful visual activists of our time, and a long-time advocate for their black LGBTQ+ community.’

Loudermilk

Lucy Ives

‘The bro has a pair of plump dogs over which he deploys nauseating quantities of ketchup.’

Lucy Ives and Niina Pollari In Conversation

Lucy Ives & Niina Pollari

‘For me, narratives are always tied to and emerging from other narratives; there is no single beginning, no origin.’

To Zinder

Sven Lindqvist

Obsessed with a single line from Conrad’s The Heart of Darkness – Kurtz’s injunction to ‘Exterminate All the Brutes’ – Sven Lindqvist set out across Central Africa, and wrote a book that revealed precisely what Europe’s imperial powers had exacted on Africa’s people over the course of the preceding two centuries.

Rules for Visiting

Jessica Francis Kane

‘It wasn’t until the end of dinner, when my aunt started clearing and my grandmother demanded another bottle of wine, that I began to understand.’

Liz Berry and Mona Arshi In Conversation

Liz Berry & Mona Arshi

‘I longed for poems to meet me in my sorrow and help me know how to live in that new world, how to survive it.’

Pajtim Statovci | Notes on Craft

Pajtim Statovci

‘My childhood was pierced not only by the violence in Kosovo but also by the violence my immigrant family was confronted with in Finland.’

Introduction

Sigrid Rausing

Editor Sigrid Rausing introduces Granta 147: 40th-Birthday Special.

Cousins

Angela Carter

‘It sounded like the birth of tragedy.’

The Summer After the War

Kazuo Ishiguro

‘As it was, my grandfather began helping me to paint without my having to ask him.’

Evensong

Todd McEwen

‘Characteristically my wife refused to be drawn into the situation while I became obsessed with it.’

A Coup

Bruce Chatwin

‘You do not understand. In this country one understands nothing.’

The Fall of Saigon

James Fenton

‘I wanted to see a communist victory, which I presumed to be inevitable. I wanted to see the fall of a city.’

Tadpoles

Primo Levi

‘It was a harsh and brutal puberty: the tiny creatures began to fret, as if an inner sense had forewarned them of the torment in store’

The Imam and the Indian

Amitav Ghosh

‘We were both travelling, he and I: we were travelling in the West. The only difference was that I had actually been there, in person.’

Menudo

Raymond Carver

‘Vicky says I’m crazy. She said worse things too last night. But who could blame her?’

His Roth

Philip Roth

‘I naively believed as a child that I would always have a father present, and the truth seems to be that I always will.’

Glitches

John Gregory Dunne

‘I prefer not to speculate about what might have happened if I had not taken the ECG.’

The Snow in Ghana

Ryszard Kapuściński

‘We always carry it to foreign countries, all over the world, our pride and our powerlessness.’ Translated from the Polish by William Brand.

The Little Winter

Joy Williams

‘She remembered being happy off and on that day, and then looking at things and finding it all unkind.’

At Yankee Stadium

Don DeLillo

‘From a series of linked couples they become one continuous wave, larger all the time.’

The Zoo in Basel

John Berger

‘To create is to let take over something which did not exist before and is therefore new.’

Dreams for Hire

Gabriel García Márquez

‘The wave had erupted with such force that it obliterated the glass lobby.‘ Translated from the Spanish by Nick Caistor.

Editorial

Bill Buford

Bill Buford on his decision to resign as editor of this magazine, which he relaunched in its present form in 1979.

Where is Kigali?

Lindsey Hilsum

‘Evariste was the nightwatchman. He and I were alone in the house in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, when the killing started.’

Agnes of Iowa

Lorrie Moore

‘Through college she had been a feminist – more or less. She shaved her legs, but just not often enough, she liked to say.’

Nadine at Forty

Hilary Mantel

‘Each day we re-enact, on ourselves, what was done to us.’

Those Who Felt Differently

Ian Jack

‘Could grief for one woman have caused all this? We were told so.’

Self-Consciousness

Edward W. Said

‘It was through my mother that I grew more aware of my body as incredibly fraught and problematic.‘

Editing Vidia

Diana Athill

‘I thought so highly of Vidia’s writing and felt his presence on our list to be so important that I simply could not allow myself not to like him.’

Shrinks

Edmund White

‘Self-doubt, which is a cousin to self-hatred, became my constant companion.’

Kiltykins

Ved Mehta

‘When I was seeing Kilty (how, even today, the word 'seeing' mesmerizes me), the fact of my blindness was never mentioned, referred to, or alluded to’.

The View from this End

Alexandra Fuller

‘It lay like a sodden comma, curled up against its mother, and no one realised it was dead.’