Aminatta Forna and Maaza Mengiste: A Conversation

From Literary Hub:

Tumbuktu, Tehran, London, Freetown, Honolulu, New Orleans. These are but a few of the compass points visited in The Window Seat, Aminatta Forna’s debut collection of essays, which Grove/Atlantic publishes in May next year. As a reporter and traveler, Forna has been studying flight and movement for her entire life. She has also lived in its wake. Just as Barack Obama, Sr. departed Kenya for America for an education, Forna’s own father left Sierra Leone to study medicine abroad.

Raised between countries, with a front row seat to ruptures of history, Forna muses here on what it means to live in a world shaped by travel of choice and necessity. How to appreciate the wonders of flight while also acknowledging the terror which prompts less metaphorical flight. As the child of a doctor, who one day wanted to be a veterinarian, Forna also returns such questions to the biosphere. What does the way we treat animals and landscapes say of our capacity to share any space? How will we ever appreciate the gulf that stands between us and every other species, for whom migration is often crucial to survival?

Recently, Forna spoke over email with novelist and friend Maaza Mengiste, whose latest book, The Shadow King, was a finalist for the 2020 Booker Prize.

More here.