Last week, Anthony Shadid’s memoir House of Stone, which tells of the author’s attempts to rebuild his dilapidated family home in Marjayoun, Lebanon and in turn of a search for identity in a restless Middle East—was published in the United Kingdom. To celebrate, Granta published a series of short meditations by writers including Teju Cole, Rawi Hage, Ha Jin, A.L. Kennedy, Yiyun Li and Santiago Roncagliolo on where we think of—if anywhere—when we think of going home.
It’s Anthony Shadid week over at Granta. There is some great meditations on identity; our favorite is Teju Cole’s on Lagos:
“Children have only a shallow understanding of the places in which they live. Home, whatever its difficulties, is where life is. Simple. I grew up in Lagos, and moved to the U.S. after high school. I have lately been returning to Lagos, once or twice a year, returning with the elation, distress, fury, and curiosity of an adult, and when, one evening last November, a man came up to my car in stalled traffic, pointed a gun at me and threatened to shoot, I understood something new, something that had eluded me as a child: home can also be where you go to die.”