Salman Rushdie, the India-born novelist who endured years in seclusion due to an Iranian call for Muslims to take his life over his writings, is set to release a memoir recounting the events surrounding his 2022 stabbing in New York, as announced by book publisher Penguin Random House on Wednesday.
Rushdie’s upcoming memoir, titled “Knife: Meditations After an Attempted Murder,” is scheduled for release on April 16, 2024.
“This was a necessary book for me to write: a way to take charge of what happened, and to answer violence with art,” stated Rushdie, who has curtailed his public appearances since the attack last year.
At 76 years of age, Rushdie received the ‘Freedom to Publish’ award from the British Book Awards in May.
During an onstage assault in August 2022, while delivering a lecture in New York, Rushdie lost sight in one eye and sustained damage to one of his hands. His assailant, a Shiite Muslim American from New Jersey, has entered a ‘not guilty’ plea to charges of second-degree attempted murder and assault.
Rushdie, in the aftermath of the attack, went on to release a new novel, “Victory City,” nearly half a year later.
Rushdie has grappled with death threats for an extended period, primarily associated with his fourth novel, “The Satanic Verses,” which faced bans in multiple countries with significant Muslim populations upon its publication in 1988 due to passages deemed blasphemous by certain individuals.
Following the issuance of a fatwa, or religious edict, by Iran’s then-supreme leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, calling for Rushdie’s assassination, the author lived in seclusion for an extended period. Although Iran’s pro-reform government under President Mohammad Khatami distanced itself from the fatwa in the late 1990s, the substantial bounty on Rushdie’s life persisted, and the fatwa remained in effect.
Khomeini’s successor, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, once affirmed the fatwa against Rushdie to be “irrevocable.”