Fully-illustrated, The Passenger collects the best new writing, photography, art and reportage from around the world.
IN THIS VOLUME: Out of the Shadows by Tash Aw・Against the Stars by Tommaso Melilli・Afraid of Being Free by Samar Yazbek・plus: the Champs-Elysées between luxury and riots, the French Republic between antisemitism and islamophobia, the most elegant Congolese dandies of all time, one Parisian woman you will not encounter, the city’s legendary football team that is not the PSG, and much more...
Nothing is what it seems in this city, starting with its size: small if you look only at its core of the twenty arrondissements but the second-largest in Europe if you consider the whole Île-de-France. The radiance of the “city of lights” can be blinding even for tourists: the clash with the real city, so different from the one depicted in films and books, results in some of them developing the so-called “Paris syndrome.” That said, the cracks in the postcard image of the city seem to multiply: the November 2015 terrorist attacks, the demonstrations of the yellow vests, the riots in the suburbs, Notre-Dame in flames, record heatwaves and the coronavirus. Meanwhile, soaring living costs are forcing many Parisians to leave the city.
Yet these are not just a series of unfortunate events. They are phenomena—from increasing population density to climate change, from immigration to the repercussions of globalization and geopolitics— that all metropolises in the world must face. And in Paris, today, the mood is not one of defeat but of renewal: from the city’s ongoing environmental and urbanistic transformation to the fight by a new generation of chefs against the traditionalism of starred restaurants; from the children of immigrants who take to the streets for the right to feel French to the women determined to break the sexism and stereotypes that dominate the fashion industry. Is there anyone who seriously thinks they can teach Parisians how to make a revolution?