Interview | Ben Okri | Granta Magazine

Ben Okri | Interview

Ben Okri & Saskia Vogel

‘Whenever we use the word beauty or we feel it, it comes from a sense of something indefinable.’

Ben Okri

Ben Okri was born in 1959 in Minna, Nigeria. He published his first novel, Flowers and Shadows in 1980 and his second, The Landscapes Within, in 1982, while studying comparative literature at Essex University. He has worked as a broadcaster for the BBC World Service and was poetry editor of West Africa magazine for seven years. His novel The Famished Road won the Booker Prize in 1991. He has also published essays, short stories, and a collection of poetry. His most recent novel is Starbook, which was followed by a collection of stories Tales of Freedom.

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Saskia Vogel

Saskia Vogel is an author and translator from Los Angeles, now living in Berlin. Permission, her debut novel, about love, loss and BDSM, was published in four languages in 2019. She has translated leading Swedish authors such as Lina Wolff, Karolina Ramqvist, Johannes Anyuru, and Katrine Marcal, whose Who Cooked Adam Smith’s Dinner? is published by Portobello Books. Her translations and writing have appeared in publications such as Guernica, the White Review, the OffingParis Review DailyLitHub and Two Lines. Previously, she worked as Granta magazine’s publicist.

Photograph © Fette Sans

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