Ninth Edition of Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob inaugurated by Joy Goswami

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Joy Goswami in conversation with Avirup Mukhopadhyay at the ninth Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob
Joy Goswami in conversation with Avirup Mukhopadhyay at the ninth Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob
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Ninth Edition of Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob inaugurated by Joy Goswami

Festival Highlights

Ø  Celebrating the 200th birth anniversary of Michael Madhusudan Dutt

Ø  Celebrating the centenary of Sukumar Ray’s unique work of literary nonsense verse – Abol Tabol

Ø  Musical tribute to Kanika Bandhyopadhyay and Suchitra Mitra

Ø  22 meticulously curated sessions spanning a wide range of topics – to name a few like translations, politics, Bengali comics & graphic novels, women’s writings and Literature of Bangladesh

Kolkata, 24 November 2023: India’s first Bengali literary festival, Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob (ABSU) commenced its ninth edition with inspiring writers and thinkers. Eminent poet, Joy Goswami inaugurated the festival at the iconic Oxford Bookstore in the distinguished presence of Abhirup Mukhopadhyay and Swagat Sengupta, Festival Director and CEO of Oxford Bookstores.

The inaugural session was followed by three captivating sessions featuring creative luminaries from different walks of life. These sessions explored a diverse range of themes like Commemoration of the 200th birth anniversary of Michael Madhusudan Dutt with Aveek Majumder, Debatosh Das, Sakti Sadhan Mukhopadhyay in conversation with Abhishek Ghoshal. Aveek Majumder moderated conversations around translations with Chinmoy Guha, Chaitali Chattopadhyay, Abhijit Mukherjee and Srikumar Chattopadhyay. The first day of Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob concluded with a session that discussed how literature goes beyond the pages of books with Debashis Sen, Satyam Roychowdhury, Arindam Sil and Suvadeep Chakraborty on the panel.

“There are two types of writer-poet all over the world.  The first type craves for the stage, limelight, and festivity and the other whose writing table is their stage. While the former group is numerous, the latter remains limited. And this is how the world is.”, said Joy Goswami.

Swagat Sengupta, Festival Director and CEO of Oxford Bookstores stated, “ABSU has consistently strived to elevate the stature of Bengali literature, providing a platform for Bengali literary enthusiasts to engage with eminent authors, scholars, and artists. We are overwhelmed with the love and support showered by the audiences over the years. This year’s festival promises to be more enriching and thought-provoking experience for all. We hope that literature lovers can once again immerse themselves in this literary and cultural extravaganza at Oxford Bookstore.”

Upcoming sessions for the 9th Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob has an assortment of topics. Day 2 i.e. 25 November 2023 will revolve around out of the box discussions on themes like politics; representation of rural life in Bengali literature; poetry; declining importance of stories & novels in magazines and periodicals; tussle between violence and love stories in Bengali literature and the role of memes and jokes in cornering humour in Bengali Literature. A musical tribute will be given in remembrance of Kanika Bandhyopadhyay and Suchitra Mitra.

Day 3 (26th November 2023) has a mixture of riveting and light-hearted sessions. While Word games and Poetry reading session partnered with Shabdabaaji and Surojit-o-Bondhura Kobita Club respectively will engage the audience with fun activities, whereas topics on women’s writing; State policies vs Politics in Literature (partnered with Zee 24 Ghanta); Science fiction (to name a few) will deliberate crucial themes in Bengali literature. The evening shall also witness two major sessions: 100 years of Abol Tabol & Literature in Bangladesh.

In recognition of ABSU’s global reach and to enhance accessibility for Bengali literature enthusiasts worldwide, the festival is being LIVE streamed on the official Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob Facebook page and YouTube channel on all three days: November 24, 25, and 26.

ABSU 2023 Speakers: The ninth edition of ABSU will host eminent personalities like Joy Goswami, Pracheta Gupta, Satyam Roychowdhury, Arindam Sil, Binod Ghoshal, Sadat Hossain, Himadrikishore Dasgupta, Anjan Dutt, Mir, Srijato Bandopadhyay, Saikat Mukhopadhyay, Ashoke Viswanathan, Chinmoy Guha, Aveek Majumder, Debashis Sen, Hamiruddin Middya, Nalini Bera, Swapnamoy Chakraborty, Indranil Sanyal, Sujog Bandyopadhyay, Noor Islam, Tilottama Majumdar, Ullas Mallick, Raja Bhattacharya, Debjyoti Bhattacharyya, Anuttama Banerjee, Amar Mitra, Debasis Mukhopadhyay, Prasadranjan Ray, Anita Agnihotri, Dipanwita Ray, Soumyaditya Mukherjee, Payel Sengupta to name a few. This eclectic curation has been done under the stewardship of Saikat Mukhopadhyay and Subhankar Dey.

ABSU 2023 Partners: To contribute to the success of the ninth edition of ABSU, the festival will be supported by ZEE 24 Ghanta as Television Partner and Anandabazar Patrika Online and The Telegraph- My Kolkata as Digital Media Partners and Cha Bar as Refreshment PartnerShabdabaaji, Surojit-O-Bondhura Kobita Club and Exceller Books is also on-board as Session Partners for the ninth edition of ABSU.

About Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob (ABSU)Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob (ABSU), India’s first Bangla Literary Festival (ie. Utsob in Bangla) created by the century old Oxford Bookstores in 2015, honours the rich literary tradition of the Bangla language. The objective of ABSU, a prized initiative of Oxford Bookstores, is to make Bangla literature increasingly visible and accessible, build an audience for Bangla books and create a culture of readership and familiarization with Bangla language among the youth. An interactive platform bringing together voices of contemporary Bangla Literature from the national and international stage, ABSU showcases all aspects of Bangla literature and literary expression and their impact on various art forms.  The festival is committed to the journey of Bangla Literature which is both exciting and exhilarating. The festival has hosted eminent personalities in the last eight editions including Shirshendu Mukhopadhay, Nabaneeta Dev Sen, Pabitra Sarkar, Samaresh Majumdar, Sankha Ghosh, Pracheta Gupta, Ranjan Bandhopadhyay, Sanjib Chattopadhyay, Saikat Mukhopadhyay, Anindo Chattopadhay, Nrisingha Prasad Bhaduri, Srijato, Binod Ghoshal, Himadrikishore Dasgupta, Anish Deb, Krishnendu Mukherjee, Subodh Sarkar, Suman Mukhopadhyay, Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury, Arindam Sil, Nachiketa, Surojit Chatterjee, Swagatalakshmi Dasgupta, Rupam Islam, Sabyasachi Chakraborty, Barun Chandra, Parambrata Chatterjee, Chandan Sen, Kheyali Dastidar and Sohini Sengupta. The festival has also attracted prominent literary personalities from Bangladesh like Selina Hossain and Imdadul Haq Milan.

About Oxford Bookstore: Established in 1919, Oxford Bookstore is one of the oldest heritage bookstores in the nation. It is India’s only bookstore to curate multiple literary festivals like Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival, Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob, and Hindi Sahitya Utsav. The Oxford Bookstore not only offers book lovers access to the very best books and ambience but also India’s first-of-its-kind tea boutique, Cha Bar. At Oxford Bookstores, success is measured by the smiles on millions of happy readers that the brand has served over the last 100 years. Each time you walk into our iconic store in Kolkata, its old-world charm leaves you enchanted and desiring for more. Our fleet of ‘happy to help’ knowledgeable booksellers and conversant hosts work round the clock to bring to our vendees world-class reading experience. Be it through our books or our fine teas we abide by the brand’s motto – Much more than a bookstore – at every Bookstore. To know more about Oxford Bookstore log on to www.oxfordbookstore.com

About Post Author

Editor Desk

Antara Tripathy M.Sc., B.Ed. by qualification and bring 15 years of media reporting experience.. Coverred many illustarted events like, G20, ICC,MCCI,British High Commission, Bangladesh etc. She took over from the founder Editor of IBG NEWS Suman Munshi (15/Mar/2012- 09/Aug/2018 and October 2020 to 13 June 2023).
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