Jaipur Literature Festival to be hybrid in years to come

The litfest will be a 10-day extravaganza with an eclectic line-up of speakers and authors

Despite the scare, the list of speakers and authors participating continues to be impressive, reflecting a diversity of books, themes, subjects, and ideas.
Despite the scare, the list of speakers and authors participating continues to be impressive, reflecting a diversity of books, themes, subjects, and ideas.

Returning with an on-ground event in January next year, the Jaipur Literature Festival is set to take place between January 28 and February 1, 2022, on-ground in Jaipur and until February 6 online, making it a 10-day-long literature extravaganza. Encouraged by the reach of the virtual edition of the festival this year, the organisers told FE: “We believe the world has an appetite to hear the celebrated thought leaders at the festival. We have seen incredible success with the online edition earlier this year and we plan to continue producing an online and on-ground festival in the years to come.”

On the continuing pandemic, the on-ground event at Jaipur promises to follow all Covid protocols, including social distancing, mandatory and random testing. Despite the scare, the list of speakers and authors participating continues to be impressive, reflecting a diversity of books, themes, subjects, and ideas.

The upcoming edition will host over 250 speakers, writers, thinkers, politicians, journalists and popular cultural icons from across a vast array of nationalities, representing 21 Indian and international languages as well as major awards such as the Nobel, the Booker Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, the Sahitya Akademi, the Padma Bhushan, the Padma Shri, the DSC Prize for Literature, the JCB Prize for Literature and many more.

Participants can look forward to several Nobel laureates, including this year’s winner for literature Abdulrazak Gurnah, Daniel Kahneman and Abhijit V Banerjee.

The 2021 Booker Prize winning author Damon Galgut will discuss his writing style, process, inspirations, and the essence of his latest work The Promise. Another Booker Prize-winning author DBC Pierre will discuss experimental fiction and the plea for heart and soul in robotic times at his session. British writer and translator Deborah Smith, in conversation with translator Arunava Sinha, will discuss the many, often intangible, tasks of the translator comprising integrity, interpretation, expression and the singular objective of storytelling. Her translation of Korean author Han Kang’s The Vegetarian won the Man Booker International Prize in 2016 and is widely celebrated for its feminist treatment of Kang’s vivid and radical novel.

Indian-American businesswoman and former CEO of PepsiCo Indra Nooyi will be in conversation with author Aparna Piramal Raje, discussing her life, her trailblazing philosophy of ‘Performance with Purpose’ and the importance of a care infrastructure that benefits both women and men.

Speaking at a curtain raiser held in Delhi recently, Namita Gokhale, writer, publisher, and co-director of the festival, said, “We have crafted a programme, both on-ground and virtual, that conjures the elusive spirit of our transforming times, and gives us healing and resilience.” William Dalrymple, writer, historian and festival co-director, said, “Never have we had a line-up quite as extraordinary as this. It’s going to be most extraordinary few days and a Jaipur Literature Festival vintage year that must on account be missed.”

Sanjoy K Roy, managing director of Teamwork Arts, which produces the Jaipur Literature Festival, said, “This year’s programme reflects the turmoil, tragedy, and immense resilience that human beings have displayed in the face of great challenges. As we embark on a new year, we bring to you celebrated thought leaders of the world, who try and make sense of our complex times.”

Preeta Singh, president of Teamwork Arts, said, “The enhanced hybrid format will enable the festival to reach untapped audiences far and wide along with our existing audiences. With a greater goal, we have created an enriched experience for book-lovers and partners to celebrate the power of literature.”

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