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  • Arts & Culture
  • Issue 40

Fellow Feeling

The pleasure of a stranger’s touch. Words by Baya Simons. Photograph by Oye Diran.

In Teju Cole’s novel Open City, Julius, the Nigerian doctor whom we follow as he wanders around Manhattan, describes going to a tailor’s shop. “For me, the intimate wonder of getting measured for clothes was like that of getting your hair cut, or feeling the warm touch of the doctor’s hand nestled against your throat as he took your temperature, ” he writes. “These were the rare cases in which you gave permission to a stranger to enter your personal

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