Adonis, the greatest living poet in Arabic, will come to Bangladesh for the first time to join the Dhaka Literary Festival 2017 which begins on November 16 at Bangla Academy in the city.
“The Paris-based Syrian poet, who is 87 now, was delighted to accept our invitation, after he received a warm and heartfelt recommendation about us from his friend Sir VS Naipaul, who opened our festival last year,” said Ahsan Akbar, one of the directors of the festival.
Aside from Adonis, this year's international line-up includes two Man Booker Prize-winning authors, Ben Okri and Aravind Adiga, Sir David Hare, Nabaneeta Dev Sen, Lionel Shriver, Shashi Tharoor, William Dalrymple, Esther Freud, Lawrence Osborne. According to Akbar, there will also be a very special appearance from the Oscar-winning actor Tilda Swinton.
“We are delighted to announce that our programme will represent every genre strongly – from children's books to performance poetry – including journalists from some of the leading newspapers and magazines in the world,” Akbar said.
“Like every year, the festival will celebrate several book launches, and most notably we will be hosting the official launch of the critically acclaimed literary journal Granta in Bangladesh this year,” he added.
The seventh winner of the annual DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, which is a prestigious international literary award specifically focused on South Asian writing, will be announced at Dhaka Lit Fest this year.
A sneak peek at DLF 2017:
- Tilda Swinton will be reading from John Berger's works. The Seasons in Quincy: Four Portraits of John Berger will also be screened at the festival
- Lionel Shriver on cultural appropriation
- Shashi Tharoor on the legacy of the British Raj
- William Dalrymple on the Kohinoor
- Charles Glass on Syria and the Middle East
- Recitations by Adonis
- Launch of Granta in Bangladesh
- Announcement of the winner of the DSC Prize
The full list of speakers will be published on the website of Dhaka Lit Fest on October 25 and online registration for the attendees will go live two days later on 27 October.