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ANDRÉ NAFFIS-SAHELY and FRED D'AGUIAR read from their new anthology THE HEART OF A STRANGER: AN ANTHOLOGY OF EXILE LITERATURE

The Heart of a Stranger: An Anthology of Exile Literature (Pushkin Press)

Exile lies at the root of our earliest stories. Charting varied experiences of people forced to leave their homes from the ancient world to the present day, The Heart of a Stranger is an anthology of poetry, fiction and non-fiction that journeys through six continents, with over a hundred contributors drawn from twenty-four languages.

Highlights include the wisdom of the 5th century Desert Fathers and Mothers, The Flight of the Irish Earls, Madame de Staël’s thoughts on Napoleon’s tyranny, Emma Goldman’s travails in the wake of the First Red Scare, Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s tales of European colonial settlers in Kenya and the work of the contemporary Eritrean poet Ribka Sibhatu.

Edited by poet and translator André Naffis-Sahely, The Heart of a Stranger offers a uniquely varied look at a theme both ancient and urgently contemporary.

Praise for The Heart of a Stranger:

"The Heart of a Stranger is world history told through the voices of the exiled, from Sappho and Seneca to Dante and Darwish. [...] What’s clear from the fragments in this anthology, so lovingly and purposefully arranged by Naffis-Sahely, is that the pity we feel when Adam and Eve are kicked out of Eden isn’t for them – it’s for us all."--William Atkins, Times Literary Supplement

"Offers a uniquely varied look at a theme both ancient and urgently contemporary." --London Review Bookshop

"A wonderful, provocative and resonant anthology. This is a necessary book. I loved it." --Edmund de Waal, author of The Hare with Amber Eyes

André Naffis-Sahely is the author of the collection The Promised Land: Poems from Itinerant Life (Penguin, 2017) and the pamphlet The Other Side of Nowhere (Rough Trade Books, 2019). He is from Abu Dhabi, but was born in Venice to an Iranian father and an Italian mother. His writing has appeared in The Nation, Harper's, Poetry, New Statesman, Playboy, The Believer, The Economist, and the Financial Times. His translations include over twenty titles of fiction, poetry and nonfiction, featuring works by Honoré de Balzac, Émile Zola, Abdellatif Laâbi, Tahar Ben Jelloun and Alessandro Spina. Several have been featured as 'Books of the Year' in The Guardian, Literary Hub and National Public Radio.

Fred D'Aguiar is a poet, novelist, playwright, born in London of Guyanese parents and raised in Guyana. He teaches at UCLA and in Callaloo’s Creative Writing Workshop. He was Judith E. Wilson Fellow at Cambridge University and has been shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize. He is also the author of four novels, the first of which, The Longest Memory (Pantheon, 1994), won both the David Higham Prize for Fiction and the Whitbread First Novel Award. His plays include High Life (1987) and A Jamaican Airman Foresees His Death (1991).

Event date: 
Saturday, January 18, 2020 - 5:00pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
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