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Public Culture

An interdisciplinary journal of transnational cultural studies

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PUBLIC BOOKS: Virtual Roundtable on Amy Waldman’s The Submission

12 March 2012


Last fall Public Books sponsored a lively roundtable discussion of Amy Waldman’s widely praised novel The Submission (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2011), which considers what might have happened if the winner of an anonymous architectural design competition for a Ground Zero memorial had been an American Muslim.

The novel poses questions about our obligations as citizens; our obligations to those we love, and to those we don’t know; to those here, and to those elsewhere; to those we have lost, and to those to come; to truth and to beauty; to ideas and to experience; to those we agree with, and to those whose views may seem beyond the pale.

Now we are pleased to publish the remarks delivered by two of the live event’s participants, Nadia Abu el-Haj and Bruce Robbins, along with two original essays by Rebecca Walkowitz and by James E. Young, a member of the jury for a National 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero:

In the coming weeks be sure to check for more on the full launch of Public Books coming in late spring.


About the Journal

Public Culture is a reviewed interdisciplinary journal of cultural studies, published three times a year in Fall, Winter, and Spring for the Institute for Public Knowledge by Duke University Press. The journal's full archives are available online at

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