Michael Ondaatje on the Internationalism of English Lit

The complete interview is only available in German, but the preview on signandsight.com is pretty intriguing.

“Rushdie’s novel Midnight’s Children (from 1981) changed English literature. Before it, there was an author by the name of G.V. Desani who wrote a novel called All about H. Hatterr (1948). That was the first Indian novel that hit English literature with a bang. And perhaps that’s the great thing about English literature: that it’s open to all tones. There was a time when the best English authors were Irish; Synge, Yeats, Oscar Wilde, Joyce, Beckett. Or think of Joseph Conrad, the Pole.”

And in case you’re interested, the NYRB edition of All about H. Hatterr is coming out later next month.

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