Granta | The Magazine of New Writing

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A Bar on North Avenue

Roger Ebert

‘We regulars knew each other. We dated each other. We slept with each other.’

A Coup

Bruce Chatwin

‘We are having another little change of politics. Nothing more! In these situations one must keep calm. You understand? Calm!’

A Feudal Outpost in Mount Lebanon

Lana Asfour

‘Intelligent, unpredictable, occasionally ruthless, Jumblatt shows that he is still very much in the game.’

A Few Words about Fake Breasts

Nell Boeschenstein

‘You repeat this over and over. You pinch your nipples harder. Then harder and harder still. You twist them. You dare them to say Mercy. You stare into your own eyes that are watching you from the mirror.’

A Gentle Madness

Humera Afridi

‘Pakistan is a nation of memory keepers. We feed our memories as if they are guests at tea, pay homage to them.’

A History

William Cooper

‘She was fighting for breath, fighting to live, perhaps fighting not to leave us.’

A Job on the Line

Desmond Barry

‘The atmosphere in the house was thick with my father's depression.’

A Kept Woman

Laura Bell

‘I find myself walking the high trail between fear and love.’

A Letter to my Sons: War’s End

Heinrich Böll

‘No, it's not easier for you than it was for us: don't let them tell you otherwise.’

A Letter to Our Son

Peter Carey

‘We talked about Alison’s blood. We asked her what she thought this mystery could be. Really what we wanted was to be told that everything was OK. There was a look on Alison's face when she asked. I cannot describe it, but it was not a face seeking medical “facts”.’

A Literature for Politics: Introduction

Bill Buford

‘‘A Literature for Politics' is dedicated to a different set of possibilities - the possibilities of political engagement.’

A Plug for Bukowski

Henry Davis

‘There is an American literature that is anti-intellectual, apolitical and anti-social.’

A Poet in Cuba

Reinaldo Arenas

‘Perfect totalitarian systems have always been in the vanguard: they modify not only the past and the future, but they also abolish the present.’

A Rationalist in the Jungle

Héctor Abad

‘A pale-faced, near-sighted urbanite like me is nothing less than handicapped in the heart of the jungle.’

A Revolution of Equals

Lana Asfour

‘Women have rights and we’re not going to lose them now.’

A Story for Aesop

John Berger

‘The image impressed me when I set eyes upon it for the first time. It was as if it were already familiar, as if, as a child, I had already seen the same man framed in a doorway.’

A Summer of Japanese Literature

Dan Bradley

From manga to crime fiction, contemporary literature to Nobel-Prize-winning classics, here are ten works of Japanese literature worth spending your summer on

A True Afrikaner

Mary Benson

‘What first struck me was his courtesy: it never faltered even when some remark by the prosecutor or an action by the police angered him, hardening the expression in his blue eyes.’

A Vacation From Myself

John Beckman

‘My every next thought took a melancholy detour through drippy forests of humid emotions, often never to return’

Abbottabad Pastoral

Humera Afridi

‘Until now, I had never experienced a disaster, or witnessed mass suffering and death close up.’

According to Your Will

Naomi Alderman

‘Thank you, God,’ said the boys, ‘for not making me a woman.’ ‘Thank you, God,’ said the girls, ‘for making me according to Your will.’

Africa’s Future Has No Space for Stupid Black Men

Pwaangulongii Dauod

‘The night was full of energy. The kind of energy that Africa needs to reinvent itself.’

Afrikaners and the Future

André Brink

‘What is the future of Afrikaners in South Africa?’

After Maidan

Oliver Bullough

‘A woman asked the steward behind the registration desk if our flight to Moscow was domestic or international. “We are still working on that,” the man answered.’

Aftermath

Rachel Cusk

‘The gears of life had gone into reverse.’

Against Travel Writing

Robyn Davidson

’Shortly after its publication in 1980 I was surprised to learn that I had written a travel book’.

Agnès

René Belletto

‘Having told his story, the thief had said goodbye to Agnès, regretfully, she thought’.

Alexander Chee | Portrait of My Father

Alexander Chee

‘He left for the US while his father was away on business so he couldn’t stop him.’

Alive, Alive-Oh!

Diana Athill

‘She thought of herself as a rational woman, but while she could sleep alone in an empty house for night after night without worrying, there were other nights when her nerves twitched like a rabbit's at the least sound.’

America’s Secret War

Leslie Cockburn

‘Morales’s troubles began in the spring of 1984, when he was indicted for conspiracy to import and distribute cocaine. It was this awkward development that made him particularly receptive to the proposal he received from a delegation of Contras and a CIA man that turned up at his Opa-locka office soon after the bad news.’

Amit Chaudhuri | First Sentence

Amit Chaudhuri

‘A scene in which nothing is ostensibly happening will absorb me; so will a paragraph that contains no vital piece of information.’

An Ofrenda for my Mother

Sandra Cisneros

‘She was a prisoner-of-war mother, banging on the bars of her cell all her life.’

An Education

Lynn Barber

‘The whole meeting seemed completely unreal but then everything at that time seemed unreal, so I said ‘Yes, by all means make the film,’ and went back to the hospital and forgot about her.’

An Irrelevant Parochialism

Frederick Bowers

‘What strikes an ex-patriate most about the contemporary British novel is its conformity, its traditional sameness, and its realistically rendered provincialism.’