Orhan Pamuk was recently in Egypt to inaugurate the Cairo Literary Festival. Here’s the tail-end of the opening question to the Turkish Nobel laureate, put to him by Egyptian writer Mona Anis:
It is not that we want any vulgar Sisi-versus-Erdogan quote from you, but perhaps we can discuss your relationship with politics.
Which immediately made me think of an equally audacious open-ended question to pose to China’s new Nobel man, Mo Yan:
It is not that we want any vulgar quote equating literary censorship with an airport security check, but perhaps we can discuss your relationship with politics.
For the full — and very revealing — interview with Pamuk, check out Ottoman Culture in Disguise.