Airplane Mode by Shahnaz Habib

Airplane Mode by Shahnaz Habib

$ 26.00

A playful personal and cultural history of travel from a postcolonial, person-of-color perspective, Airplane Mode asks: what does it mean to be a joyous traveler when we live in the ruins of colonialism, capitalism and climate change?

On sale January 10, 2023 ISBN: 9781646220151

For Shahnaz Habib, an Indian Muslim woman, travel has always been a complicated pleasure. Yet, journeys at home and abroad have profoundly shaped her life. In this inquiring and surprising debut, Habib traces a history of travel from pilgrimages to empires to safaris, taking on colonialist modes of thinking about travel and asking who gets to travel and who gets to write about it.

Threaded through the book are inviting and playful analyses of obvious and not-so-obvious travel artifacts: passports, carousels, bougainvilleas, guidebooks, expressways, the idea of wanderlust. Together, they tell a subversive history of travel as a Euro-American mode of consumerism—but as any traveler knows, travel is more than that. As an immigrant whose loved ones live across continents, Habib takes a deeply curious and joyful look at a troubled and beloved activity.

SHAHNAZ HABIB is a writer and translator based in Brooklyn. She translates from her mother tongue, the south Indian language of Malayalam, and has translated two novels, Jasmine Days and Al-Arabian Novel Factory, the first of which won the 2018 JCB Prize. Shahnaz teaches writing in the MFA program at Bay Path University as well as at The New School. She also consults for the United Nations. Airplane Mode is her first book.