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Salman Rushdie reappears: "I’ve always tried very hard not to adopt the role of a victim"

The writer was stabbed in August by an Iranian Revolutionary Guard supporter. The author of 'The Satanic Verses' was sentenced to death two decades ago by the Islamic regime of the Ayatollahs.

(Twitter @SalmanRushdie)

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The attack on Salman Rushdie last August failed to defuse his courage. The New Yorker published the first interview with the writer since he was stabbed by a Muslim radical when he was about to give a lecture in New York. Six months later, the author of 'The Satanic Verses' is talking about life after his attack.

Rushdie spoke frankly in this interview prior to this Tuesday's release of his latest novel, 'Victory City,' which was already finished before the attack. Unfortunately, there will not be a book tour this time. The writer lost sight in one eye. In addition, the more than ten stab wounds he took left his left hand almost completely useless. All this prevents him from writing with the usual fluency. But Rushdie does not want to be a victim: "I’ve always tried very hard not to adopt the role of a victim," he said in the interview.

The full-page photograph alongside the article in The New Yorker shows Salman Rushdie wearing glasses that cover the eye that was attacked but not the deep scar across his face. Rushdie does not hide his scars, the expensive price to pay for bravery against fanaticism. However, he humorously tries to take some of the epicness out of the photo taken by The New Yorker:

The attack

For the time being, Salman Rushdie has postponed his next novel inspired by both Franz Kafka and Thomas Mann. When asked if he would consider writing about his attack, he said that although it is something that at first "irritated" him, he isn't ruling it out and thinks the story should be written in the first person.

As for his safety, Rushdie, who gave up on it after moving to New York nearly two decades ago, now admits he will have to reflect on it. In fact, the attack occurred as he was about to give a lecture on the status of the United States as a safe place for exiled writers. As for his health, he is aware that recovery will take a long time.

There have been nightmares—not exactly the incident, but just frightening. Those seem to be diminishing. I’m fine. I’m able to get up and walk around. When I say I’m fine, I mean, there’s bits of my body that need constant checkups. It was a colossal attack..

His attacker was a 24-year-old Muslim man named Hadi Matar, an Iranian regime and Revolutionary Guard supporter who is currently facing a 25-year prison sentence for attempted second-degree murder, plus another seven years for stabbing Henry Reese, another writer who tried to intervene and defend Rushdie during the attack.

Rushdie gained international notoriety when Ruhollah Khomeini, founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran, issued a death sentence against him in the form of a fatwa following the publication of his book, 'The Satanic Verses,' which the Ayatollah considered blasphemous. Khomeini never withdrew his fatwa, and Iran even offered $3 million to whoever could kill Rushdie.