Scattered All Over the Earth

Tawada, Yoko


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Welcome to the not-too-distant future. Japan, having vanished into the sea, is now remembered as ‘the land of sushi’. Hiruko, a former citizen and a climate refugee herself, has a job teaching immigrant children in Denmark with her invented language Panska (Pan-Scandinavian): ‘homemade language. no country to stay in. three countries I experienced. no time to learn three different languages. might mix up. insufficient space in brain. so made new language. homemade language most Scandinavian people understand’.

Hiruko soon makes new friends to join her in her travels searching for anyone who can still speak her mother tongue: Knut, a graduate student in linguistics, who is fascinated by her Panska; Akash, an Indian man who lives as a woman, wearing a red sari; Nanook, an Eskimo from Greenland, first mistaken as another refugee from the land of sushi; and Nora, who works at the Karl Marx House in Trier. All these characters take turns narrating chapters, which feature an umami cooking competition; a dead whale; an ultra- nationalist named Breivik; Kakuzo robots; uranium; and an Andalusian bull fight.

Episodic, vividly imagined and mesmerising, Scattered All Over the Earth is another sui generis masterwork by Yoko Tawada.

A mind-expanding, cheerfully dystopian novel about friendship, difference, and what it means to belong, by a National Book Award-winning novelist

Review Quotes:
\”Monet’s colors change with each brushstroke, yet his landscapes appear as a whole,\” Knut reflects, and Ms. Tawada’s characters are similarly impressionistic: mobile, protean and evanescent, whirled together in a manner that can seem insubstantial but combines to form a vision of beauty and calm.–Sam Sacks \”The Wall Street Journal\”

Review Quotes:
Reading Yoko Tawada is a marvel… Scattered All Over the Earth is a reflection on language, migration and identity that manages to be entirely unpredictable.–Declan Fry \”ABC (Australia)\”

Review Quotes:
For a book about the end of the world as we know it, Yoko Tawada’s Scattered All Over the Earth is awfully cheery… [I]t’s possible to not understand someone even when you speak the same language, and to use different words but still recognize each other well.–Eve Sneider \”Wired\”

Review Quotes:
Tawada’s satirical tone and flirtation with sci-fi are intensely original.–Julia Kornberg \”Bookforum\”

Review Quotes:
Playful and deeply inventive.–Julian Lucas \”The New Yorker\”

Review Quotes:
Threats abound–a changing climate, terrorism, and hostile political structures create danger and uncertainty–but these characters carry within themselves the seeds of a possible new world. Yoko Tawada’s Scattered All Over the Earth is a cheerful dystopian novel that celebrates inventiveness, possibilities, and human connections.– \”Foreword Reviews\”

Review Quotes:
Magnificently strange. Tawada is reminiscent of Nikolai Gogol, for whom the natural situation for a ghost story was a minor government employee saving up to buy a fancy coat, the natural destiny of a nose to haunt its owner as an overbearing nobleman.–Rivka Galchen \”New York Times Magazine\”

Format: Paperback
Pages: 224
Imprint: Granta Books
Publication date: 02/08/2022

ISBN: 9781783789030