Hailed as the ‘greatest literary show on Earth’, the Jaipur Literature Festival 2022 opens today in a hybrid avatar ensuring both its on-ground magnificence as well as its nifty virtual presence. Featuring eminent speakers, the Festival will showcase a lineup of exclusively curated sessions on its virtual platform from 5th – 14th March 2022. The iconic festival will host its on-ground show from 10th – 14th March at the Clarks Amer.
There will be over 400 speakers and performers representing around 15 Indian and 20 international languages and over 20 nationalities. The winners of all the major literary awards ranging from the Nobel, the Booker, the Pulitzer, the Sahitya Akademi, the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, the JCB Prize for Literature etc. are part of the festival.
The 15th edition of the Festival will begin with the inaugural addresses by festival Co-directors Namita Gokhale & William Dalrymple, Festival Producer Sanjoy K. Roy, Managing Director, Teamwork Arts, the producer of the iconic festival.
Namita Gokhale, author and Festival Co-director, called the festival a stage “which reflects the rich diversity of India and the splendours of world literature.”
Expressing his delight with the hybrid format, William Dalrymple, author and Festival Co-director, said, “The pandemic has been a hard time for everyone, but literary festivals have faced existential challenges to their survival. Now we are back, and are thrilled to bring our beloved Festival back to the hallowed soil of Jaipur.”
Sanjoy K Roy hopes that the festival “will create another milestone with the hybrid version and we welcome all book-lovers to join us in our endeavour”.
The Festival will feature some of the world’s most celebrated thinkers and writers on this year’s programme. The 2021 Literature Nobel recipient Abdulrazak Gurnah will be in conversation with British publishing legend Alexandra Pringle at a session on a life in writing. Gurnah’s novels are striking and formidable; they refuse colonialism’s erosive histories and stereotypes. They include Paradise, shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1994, By the Sea, Desertion, and his most recent, Afterlives, which examines the German colonial force in East Africa and the lives of Tanganyikans – as they work, grieve, and love – in the darkening shadow of war.
The Nobel Prize Attendees
Stellar Italian physicist who received the 2021 Nobel in Physics, Giorgio Parisi’s phenomenal work, In a Flight of Starlings: The Wonders of Complex Systems, is a journey across pioneering studies on particles, state transformations and ‘spin glasses’. In conversation with academic and Yale professor Priyamvada Natarajan, Parisi will discuss his exceptional research and book. At another session, Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman will join New York Times best-selling author and academic Professor Olivier Sibony and legal scholar Cass R Sunstein in explaining how and why humans are so susceptible to noise in judgement and what we can do about it. At another session, Nobel Prize–winning economist Abhijit V. Banerjee will speak movingly of the bonds of food and memory, friendship and community, across cultures and continents.
Acclaimed novelist and playwright Damon Galgut’s The Promise, sharp and meditative and winner of the 2021 Booker Prize, conveys the play of power in relationships – with self, society, state – against the backdrop of post-apartheid South Africa. In conversation with author of the prize-winning books Edge of Empire, Liberty’s Exiles, and The Dawn Watch: Joseph Conrad in a Global World, Maya Jasanoff, Galgut will discuss his writing style, process, inspirations and the essence of his latest work. British writer Monica Ali’s debut novel, Brick Lane, shortlisted for the Booker Prize, was an international phenomenon. She returns with her first new book in a decade, Love Marriage- a story about two very different families thrown together by a whirlwind engagement. It is a social comedy but also a gripping tale of the social and cultural strains of love and the institution of marriage. In conversation with writer and journalist Bee Rowlatt, Ali will discuss ‘who we are and how we love in today’s Britain’.
Chigozie Obioma, the Nigerian writer described as ‘the heir to Chinua Achebe’, is the author of The Fishermen and An Orchestra of Minorities, which was shortlisted for the Booker prize in 2019. Told from the perspective of the protagonist Chinonso’s 700-year-old ‘chi’, or spirit in the Igbo tradition, the novel speaks of the mythologies as well as the realities of love. In conversation with writer and journalist Supriya Dravid, Obioma speaks of his books, telling us why he writes, and for whom. Booker Prize-winning author DBC Pierre’s recent and riotous novel, Meanwhile in Dopamine City, defies form and the limits of literary possibility. In Dopamine City, a father grapples with a world changing every day at mortal speed, his daughter’s request for her first smartphone and the choice between joining this new world or escape altogether. Pierre will discuss experimental fiction and the plea for heart and soul in robotic times.
The Festival will also feature a conversation with Booker Prize-longlisted writer Anuradha Roy on her evocative body of work. Roy’s recent novel, The Earthspinner, is a searing exploration of the fragility of peace. Roy’s other celebrated works include All the Lives We Never Lived, An Atlas of Impossible Longing, The Folded Earth and Sleeping on Jupiter. In conversation with author and co-founder of the Perera Hussein Publishing House Ameena Hussein, Roy will explore the roots of this tale of immigration, prejudice and love and discuss the context and inspirations of her fictional world.