Who Belongs at Home?

A conversation with Kamila Shamsie presented by Wolf Humanities Center

Kamila Shamsie, award-winning author, in conversation with Emily Wilson, Professor of Classical Studies, University of Pennsylvania

Kamila Shamsie’s seventh novel Home Fire follows three orphaned British Muslim siblings who struggle in different ways with their relationship to the State after one of them is enticed into becoming a jihadist. Shamsie considers family, nation, and faith in today’s age of terror against the backdrop of Sophocles’ tragedy Antigone, in which two sisters respond differently to the legal consequences of their brother’s act of treason. Home Fire received the 2018 Women’s Prize for Fiction and was longlisted for the 2017 Man Booker Prize.

Joining Ms. Shamsie will be Penn Classical Studies Professor Emily Wilson, whose poetic translation of Homer’s Odyssey illuminates family and social relationships in this ancient text, and the complicated kinship between antiquity and modernity. Shamsie and Wilson will explore the many meanings of home and homecoming, and how violence, colonialism, and war affect identity and community across national and cultural boundaries. 

Book signing to follow. 

Cosponsored by Penn’s Departments of English, Classical Studies, and South Asia Studies, and Alice Paul Center for Research on Gender, Sexuality and Women.