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All’s fair in books and war

By Tom Chatfield  

The London Book Fair is busily unfolding this week, with the “Arab world” as its guest of honour—as Boyd Tonkin explained in the Independent this morning. Is the Arab world ready for a literary revolution? he asks. Yes, probably, maybe, he answers.

The west is certainly ready for the Arab world to be ready. Among other things, the book fair sees the launch of PEN’s admirable World Atlas, a reader-generated global resource linking writers and readers which will focus for its first year on writers of Arab origin; the book fair will also feature the prominent presence of Kalima, a…

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