Art and literature are vital to democracy - here’s why
With everything that's going on in the world, it's easy to question the value of telling stories or making sculptures. Easy, but wrong, says Miguel Syjuco.
Miguel Syjuco (1976) became a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times in 2016. He is a novelist, journalist and university professor from the Philippines. His debut novel “Ilustrado” was a New York Times Notable Book of 2010 and the winner of the Man Asian Literary Prize, the Hugh MacLennan Prize, the Palanca Award and the Filipino Readers’ Choice Award. Currently an assistant professor of practice, literature, and creative writing at New York University Abu Dhabi, Mr. Syjuco has worked on staff for the “Montreal Gazette” and the “Independent Weekly” in Australia. He has also written for the NY Times Book Review, Time magazine, Newsweek, The Globe and Mail, the BBC and other outlets. Born in Manila, Mr. Syjuco received a B.A. in English literature from the Ateneo de Manila University, an M.F.A. in creative writing from Columbia University and a Ph.D. in literature and creative writing from the University of Adelaide. His fiction and nonfiction focus on politics, history, inequality, cultural identity and literature.