"The finalists for this year’s 3QD prize write in very different genres, but they were all very impressive, which made the task of choosing just three difficult indeed."
She did not chose my musings on Alice. The winners offer an enormous breadth of literary thinking, not constrained to the Western tradition. In other words, she went beyond the usual suspects (and we mean you, Brideshead).
Here are the winners:
Top Quark: Namit Arora, Joothan: A Dalit's Life
"Namit Arora’s powerful review of Omprakash Valmiki’s Joothan: A Dalit’s Life for 3Quarks Daily places this 1997 memoir in a personal, cultural, and literary context. Arora gives a very moving portrayal of a kind of life I knew little about, an honest reckoning of the privileges of his own upbringing, and a thoughtful analysis both of Valmiki’s work in Hindi and its translation into English."
Strange Quark: Edan Lepucki, Reading and Race: On Slavery in Fiction
"All too often, the subject of race is felt to be the sole purview of people of color —-as if white people were completely unaffected by racial history or reality. Edan Lepucki’s candid piece for The Millions, in which she discusses her exposure to questions of race and slavery through various novels, shows us how literature, which requires us to have imaginative empathy, can also help us develop actual empathy."
Charm Quark: Elliot Colla, The Poetry of Revolt
"Elliot Colla’s analysis of Egyptian revolutionary slogans for Jadaliyya is both
sensitive and original. In discussing how poetry is created, performed, and remembered —-not just right now in Tahrir Square, but also during earlier historical periods-—he reminds us that literature and life are not distinct or divergent spheres, but indivisible aspects of the human experience."