Aminatta Forna with Garvia Bailey: The Window Seat
In a stunning new collection of essays from the award-winning author of Happiness, The Window Seat explores border crossings both literal and philosophical, our relationship with the natural world, and the stories that we tell ourselves. In this wide-ranging collection, Aminatta Forna writes intimately about displacement, trauma and memory, love, and how we coexist and encroach on the non-human world. In “Obama and the Renaissance Generation,” she documents how, despite the narrative of Obama’s exceptionalism, his father, like her own, was one of a generation of gifted young Africans who came to the United Kingdom and the United States for education and were expected to build their home countries anew after colonialism. In “The Last Vet,” time spent shadowing Dr. Jalloh, the only veterinarian in Sierra Leone, as he works with the street dogs of Freetown, becomes a meditation on what a society’s treatment of animals tells us about its principles. In “Crossroads,” she examines race in America from an African perspective, and in “Power Walking” she describes what it means to walk in the world in a Black woman’s body.
Aminatta Forna talks with Garvia Bailey about about The Window Seat and how the stories we tell ourselves may be the most important stories we ever encounter.