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Brick Lane Drives Wedge Between Writers

The controvery surrounding the Brick Lane movie has turned into a genuine literary feud, as Salman Rushdie takes his best shot at Germaine Greer. It all started when Greer lent support to Monica Ali’s detractors by suggesting that the “defining caricatures” of the Bangladeshi characters in Ali’s novel were a symptom of how she’s sold out her ethnic peers for acceptance by the English and that “Bangladeshi Britons would be better off not reading—or, when it comes out, seeing the film of—Brick Lane.” Well, says Rushdie, that’s just “a strange mixture of ignorance…and pro-censorship twaddle,” and he’s not a bit surprised…because Greer pulled the exact same shit when The Satanic Verses came out.

As this is all playing out in the pages of The Guardian, their own Paul Lewis provides some context for the Greer-Rushdie dustup, and notes that Greer may be preparing for the next round. He also offers up a fascinating tidbit: the two were classmates at Cambridge in the late ’60s.

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