During these uncertain times, Teju Cole is curating playlists that reflect current events and his own thoughts on history and music. Brittle Paper has compiled the playlists, which include titles like “songs without words” and “melodious uncle.” For the playlist titled “take my hand,” Cole writes: “Thinking with Arthur Jafa about making culture in freefall. Thinking with Saidiya Hartman about grieving as a way of making life with one another. A moment of rebuilding will come—for the survivors—and the features by which we will recognize each other in that rebuilding are being quietly established right now.”
“I used to run cross country in high school and it was like, I knew if I put in a certain kind of training, it was going to make me faster. If X, then Y. But with writing, it’s like, if X, if I do this thing that’s necessary, which is giving myself the space and time, then what? It’s sort of a question mark. You have no idea. You work so hard to offer yourself up to the space of the unknown.” Leslie Jamison (and Angela Flournoy and Katherine Towler) on being alone and setting aside the time to write.