Day 2 at the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival A Grand Success

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L to R- Julia Roberts, Shaun Kenworthy, Maria Goretti, Sonal Ved and Shalini Modi at AKLF 2024
L to R- Julia Roberts, Shaun Kenworthy, Maria Goretti, Sonal Ved and Shalini Modi at AKLF 2024
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Day 2 at the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival A Grand Success

·        AKLF hosted a total of 19 sessions on its second day, February 10th, 2024.

·        Guest list for Day 2 included Lopmudra Maitra, Prasun Roy, Sam Miller, Louise Fowler-Smith, Tara Gandhi, Aruna Chakravarti, Priti Paul, Anja Riedeberger, Vishes Kothari, Arshia Sattar, Urvashi Butalia, Bijoya Sawian, Manish Gaekwad, Gargi Rawat, Rajat Chaudhuri, Dia Mirza (Virtually), Bittu Sahgal, Kunal Basu, Sonal Ved, Maria Goretti, Shalini Modi, Julia Roberts, Rahul Shivshankar, Chandan Gowda, Anuja Chauhan, Jerry Pinto, Pinaki De, Debkumar Mitra and Harsha Mohan Chattoraj and many others.

·        Veteran Indian Politician P. Chidambaram discussed his new book, ‘A Watershed Year’ with journalist, Monideepa Banerjie

· The shortlist of the 9th edition of the Oxford Bookstore Book Cover Prize was announced by jurors Alka Pande, Priti Paul, Kunal Basu, and Anja Riedeberger.

·        The Tollygunge Club Main Lawn hosted a special session named ‘Close Encounters‘ with Anuja Chauhan and Jerry Pinto in conversation with Oindrilla Dutt.

·        Day 2 of Poetry Café at Alliance française du Bengale hosted Jerry Pinto, Renu Roy, Mukul Kumar, Maria Goretti, Sunil Bhandari, Supriya Newar, Iryna Vikyrchak, Basisali Chatterjee Dutt, Anjana Basu, Debasish Lahiri.

·         Day 2 of the Oxford Junior Literary Festival held at the Oxford Bookstore had Jael Silliman, Anjana Basu, and Ramanjit Kaur as speakers.

Kolkata, February 11, 2024: 

The second day of the Apeejay Literary Festival Kolkata was held at Allen Park, Oxford Bookstore, Alliance Française du Bengale, and the Tollygunge Club with guests and speakers discussing an array of topics including gastronomy, environment, climate, translations, design, art, politics and current affairs.

The valued partners for the three-day literary festival include Kenilworth Hotel, Kolkata, as the hospitality partner; Cha Bar as the refreshment partner; 93.5 Red FM as the radio partner; iLEAD and Apeejay School as the institutional partners. Australian High Commission, Alliance Française du Bengale, and Tollygunge Club are among some of the valued partners of the 15th Apeejay Literary Festival. Several well-renowned publishing houses such as Speaking Tiger, Penguin Random House, Hachette, HarperCollins, Niyogi Books, Rupa Publications, Westland Books, Juggernaut, Simon and Schuster, Bloomsbury, Om Books, Zubaan Books, and many more appear as the festival partners, creating a collaborative literary environment.

On this occasion of Day 2, Anjum Katyal, Director, AKLF, commented, “A full second day at AKLF showcased a broad range of relevant topics today. We had sessions on climate change and the environment, migration and displacement, current affairs and the nation, and translation. Family memoirs, food culture comics, and graphic literature were also featured. It was interesting to listen to stalwarts like Dia Mirza, Bittu Sahgal, Tara Gandhi, Gargi Rawat, Rajat Chaudhuri, cli-fi writer, and Louise Fowler-Smith, environmental artist, discuss climate change and the environment; Sam Miller and Ruchir Joshi on migrancy and displacement; P. Chidambaram discussing current affairs and the nation, and leading translators like Arshia Sattar, Aruna Chakravarti and others holding an adda on the significance of translation today. Popular subjects like memoirs with Manish Gaekwad and food writing with media personalities Maria Goretti and Sonal Ved were also due. Day two ended with the prestigious Oxford Bookstore Book Cover Prize shortlist being announced and a lively discussion on comics and graphic literature.”

L to R- Tara Gandhi, Bittu Sahgal, and Louise Fowler-Smith
L to R- Tara Gandhi, Bittu Sahgal, and Louise Fowler-Smith

The events of the day at Allen Park began with the session, ‘Translating the Icons,’ with Lopamudra Maitra discussing Upendra Kishore Ray Chowdhury’s whimsical tales alongside Prasun Roy, who took to Bibhutibhusan Bandyopadhyay’s horror stories. Together, they shared their experiences of translating two iconic Bengali literary personalities. Jashodhara Chakraborti conducted the session. The following session, ‘Blowin’ in the Wind’, had Sam Miller, author of Migrants, discuss the widespread phenomenon of migration and displacement. He was in conversation with Ruchir Joshi.

The third session of the day, ‘Green Earth,’ successfully saw environmental artists Louise Fowler-Smith and Tara Gandhi, environmentalist, and ornithologist, discuss their work and its relation to climate change. The session was supported by the Australian Consulate-General, Kolkata, and was conducted by Bittu Sahgal. Keeping up with the theme of translation was the session ‘Show and Tell’, where translators Aruna Chakravarti, Vishes Kothari, Arshia Sattar, and Urvashi Butalia discussed their most significant challenges as translators.

Bijoya Sawian and Manish Gaekwad revisited their family memoirs while walking down memory lane at the ‘All in the Family’ session alongside Kavita Punjabi. The next session, titled ‘Climate Fiction Moves’, had Gargi Rawat, Rajat Chaudhuri, Dia Mirza (Virtually), and Bittu Sahgal talk about how books, film, and the arts can further the cause of climate. Neela Majumdar conducted this session. ‘Table Talk: On Building a Culture of Food‘ had Sonal Ved, Maria Goretti, Shalini Modi, and Julia Roberts conversing with Shaun Kenworthy.

On Screen- Dia Mirza, On Stage from left to right- Bittu Sahgal, Neela Majumdar, Gargi Rawat and Rajat Chaudhuri
On Screen- Dia Mirza, On Stage from left to right- Bittu Sahgal, Neela Majumdar, Gargi Rawat and Rajat Chaudhuri

‘Crossroads‘ was a session where Rahul Shivshankar and Chandan Gowda discussed the ideas in their respective books, raising awareness about the India we think we know. They were in conversation with Monideepa Banerjie. The following session was also conducted by Monideepa Banerjie, which had veteran Indian Politician P. Chidambaram discuss his new book, ‘A Watershed Year.’ The final session at Allen Park titled, ‘In Graphic Detail’ saw the announcement of the Oxford Bookstore Book Cover Prize shortlist. The jurors included Alka Pande, Kunal Basu & Anja Riedeberger (Virtually).

The day concluded with a conversation between Pinaki De, Debkumar Mitra, and Harsho Mohan Chattoraj on an upcoming graphic translation of Saadat Hasan Manto’s work. Meanwhile, at the Oxford Junior Literary Festival, Day 2 continued with a ‘Meet the Author’ session followed by a ‘Words in Action’ Workshop. For Meet the Author, Jael Sillman of ‘Shalome Rides a Royal Elephant’ fame, interacted with children, followed by Anjana Basu, author of Grandfather’s Tiger Tales. The storytelling workshop for Day 2 was conducted by The Creative Arts Academy and led by Ramanjit Kaur.

The Poetry Café continued on Day 2 with Jerry Pinto reading and discussing his poems from ‘I Want a Poem and Other Poems’. This was followed by Renu Roy, who read from the ‘Far Side and Other Poems’ and later discussed with Supriya NewarMukul Kumar read from ‘The Rhythm of the Ruins’ and was in conversation with Sunil Bhandari. The final two sessions included Maria Goretti reading from ‘To the Moon and Back’ and discussing pertinent themes with Ipsita Ganguli. Finally, the Poet’s Circle convened with Sunil Bhandari, Supriya Newar, Iryna Vikyrchak, Basisali Chatterjee Dutt, Anjana Basu, and Debasish Lahiri reading recent poems.

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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