In the early 1970s, I went to China to study. My subject was meant to be Chinese literature of the twentieth century, but the timing was unfortunate: the Cultural Revolution was still unfolding and Mao’s wife, Jiang Qing, had banished or otherwise disposed of the authors and the writing that inter…
Top Reads 2020
Qualities of Earth
‘The slutty ingenuity of vegetables when it comes to desire and reproductive methods is a marvel.’
Rebecca May Johnson negotiates allotment culture.
The Second Career of Michael Riegels
‘Globalisation is incomplete: money can go anywhere, but laws cannot.’
Oliver Bullough on one of Britain’s most contested outposts: the British Virgin Islands.
Learning to Sing
‘You discover during your very first lessons that the problem of singing better involves overcoming many other problems you had not ever imagined.’
A new story from Lydia Davis.
‘She began to count; it was easier this way, counting, because she would not have to remember how she felt.’
An excerpt from Ukamaka Olisakwe’s Ogadinma.
‘Like any desert, I learn myself by what’s desired of me—
and I am demoned by those desires.’
From Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz.