Djelal Kadir


On his book Memos from the Besieged City: Lifelines for Cultural Sustainability

Cover Interview of April 19, 2011

Editor’s note

Originally, this interview ran on the Rorotoko cover page under the headline

“Retelling modes of literacy, and the dangers to those who taught reading and writing otherwise.”

We highlighted two quotes.

On the first page:

“Many of these cultural ancestors have forged their legacy for the future at their own peril—some persecuted, exiled, imprisoned, or burnt at the stake. These are lifelines that must be extended and cultivated, in turn, to ensure the sustainability of our own humanity and our legacy for future generations.”

On the second:

“Torture is an integral part of terror and our own age is self-defined as an age of terrorism. Poetry in the broad sense of literature–its composition and reading–may well be the most efficacious antidote to terror, whether the terror practiced by states or by non-state agents.”