Reviewed by Namrata
Title: Interpreter of Winds
Author: Fairoz Ahmad
Publisher: Ethos Books ( 2019)
Interpreter of Winds is a collection of four stories which brings together Fairoz Ahmad’s experiences and observations while growing up as a Muslim. In a world where we are (sadly) divided by religion and united by our bitterness towards it all, these stories are an invigorating read. This short collection is a remarkable attempt to interpret faith and capture its challenges.
Ahmad is a young voice who is striving to be the change he wants to see in the world. Having co-founded an award-winning social enterprise Chapter W — which works at the intersection of women, technology and social impact, he has been awarded the Outstanding Young Alumni award by National University of Singapore for his work with the community. He believes that magic, wonder and richness of one’s history and culture, together with their quirks and eccentricities, could help narrow the gap in our understanding. His stories seem to be an amalgam to repair the breaks that whisper incompatibility through the world. Read more
By Amanda Erickson
When it comes to literacy, Singapore is no slouch. The country boosts a 98 percent literacy rate, and its reading curriculum is the best in the world, according to the Program for International Student Assessment.
That doesn’t mean, though, that Singapore is a country of bookworms. A 2015 survey found that just 40 percent of the population had read a work of literature in the past year. (In America, that number is about 70 percent.) Just a quarter had picked up something by a Singaporean author.
Now, leaders have come up with a solution: tiny books. Starting this month, public transportation riders will be able to buy pocket-size tomes for about $10. The “ticket books” are part of a broader campaign to get people reading again. Their launch will coincide with a weekend of book fairs, author meet-and-greets and literature seminars across the city-state. Read more
Source: The Washington Post
The Delhi University Press, modelled after academic presses at Oxford and Cambridge, was established in 1961. But since it’s inception, the DUP is nothing more than a printing shop, churning out answer sheets and envelopes. Not a single academic work of note or even a course book has been published by the press for many years.
In contrast, universities in Asia such as the National University of Singapore and Hong Kong University have printing presses whose sole objective is to support the university’s academic goals.
Hindustan Times spoke to Peter Schoppert, managing director of National University of Singapore (NUS) Press and Malcolm Litchfield, publisher and director of the Hong Kong University Press, to gain some insight into how their university presses work.
Peter Schoppert, managing director, National University of Singapore Press
We publish around 30 books a year, plus three journals. We will launch a new journal early next year on Southeast Asian contemporary and modern art. Our biggest markets for book sales are Singapore, Malaysia, and the United States, in that order. Read more
Eva Lim is a graduate research student at the National University of Singapore. Her research focuses on the intersections between British and Chinese literary modernisms. At this juncture, her work has been published in Body Boundaries: The EtiquetteSG Anthologies Volume 1. She is currently working on her first poetry collection under the NAC Mentor Access Project (2014-2015).
Out of the twenty writers from the Commonwealth who have made it to the Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2014 shortlist, two of the writers are from Singapore.
They are Yu-Mei Balasingamchow (for her story Grandmother) and Sara Adam Ang (for her story A Day in the Death).
They are the only two Asian writers on the list. Read more