world literature

Are Their Intellectuals Better than Ours?

What was more dazzling, my view of the Bosphorus with the Aghia Sophia and the Blue Mosque or the conversation? In Istanbul last month I rediscovered what I treasure whenever I go abroad: the well-roundedness and cosmopolitanism of intellectuals in comparison with whom we here appear narrow and specialized.

World Poetry Grindhouse

Are you on the record anywhere about Carlos Ramírez Hoffman or Carlos Weider?

That was the indelicate question I kept mulling over—and ultimately kept to myself—during the Q and A session after Raúl Zurita's Sept. 26 poetry reading here at Northwestern University, where Zurita was accompanied by his latest translator, Anna Deeny.

Baby, we're so Provincial

There must be something right with a country, when your guide talks to you on your hike outside Bogota about his love for Llosa, Cortázar, Hemingway, Kazantzakis, and Tolstoy. And then at the end of the hike he asks for a list of novels and poets he should read!

Am I living in the wrong country or what?