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Ethnographic fiction and reality: Geisha Girl

Recently I have been thinking a lot about ethnographic fiction. The above documentary I watched for the first time shortly after reading Arthur Golden’s beloved fictionalised account of life as a Geisha in Kyoto in the early 1900s, Memoirs of a Geisha. I didn’t realise until halfway through the book that the account was fictional. … Continue reading

William Dalrymple’s Nine Lives: in search of a narrative voice

I read William Dalrymple’s City of Djinns¬†last year and, although I was impressed with the wonderful insight it gave into life in such a vibrant country, I found his style self-centred and, perhaps because it is of its time, voyeuristic. Thus I was hesitant to read another one of his books, but found myself picking … Continue reading