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Yann Martel’s lonely book club
Zalfa Feghali

and child on the street, can engage with and react to’ (p. 222). Harper’s cuts to arts and culture funding serves only, according to Martel, to disempower citizens; in the letter accompanying dispatch 51, William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, Martel asks Harper directly, ‘Is it really your aim to transform Canada into a post-​literate society?’ (pp. 217–​18). In using literature and the act of reading as an act of resistance, then, Martel works to galvanise his readers to enact their own resistance to Harper’s policies (and politics). Ultimately, Martel never

in Crossing borders and queering citizenship