The book-censor of Kabul
Padraig Reidy: The book-censor of Kabul
28 Jul 10

Author Åsne Seierstad has been found guilty of defamation after an Afghani family objected to her portrayal of them in her international bestseller The Bookseller of Kabul.

An Oslo court found that Seierstad’s book misrepresented the lives of the Rais family, whom she had stayed with as a guest in 2002.

What’s interesting here is that while the Rais’s have no assets or life in Norway, they were allowed to sue in a Norwegian court. But as Seierstad is Norway-based, and the book was published in Norway (and elsewhere) this doesn’t count as libel tourism, does it?

By Padraig Reidy

Padraig Reidy is the editor of Little Atoms and a columnist for Index on Censorship. He has also written for The Observer, The Guardian, and The Irish Times.