Embracing the COVID protocol, the iconic Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) concluded its month-long North American virtual event, celebrating the power of literature and mesmerising audience with the magical flow of conversations.
The JLF in the USA started November 8, with JLF Colorado sessions from November 8 - 11, and November 15 - 18. JLF Houston Online was from November 21 - 22, JLF New York Online from November 23 - 24, 2020 and JLF Toronto November 27-29.
As in the past editions, the JLF this time brought in a grand virtual feast of ideas celebrating acclaimed authors, poets, journalists, Chefs, thinkers, Nobel laureates, Pulitzer, Commonwealth and other award-winning speakers, virtually under one roof, to share their ideas on topics like coronavirus, Black Lives Matter, environment, mythology, crime writing, poetry, democracy, music, entertainment, food and beauty of its host cities.
Some of the stellar lineup of speakers included Shashi Tharoor, Makarand R Paranjape, Namita Gokhale, Indian-American author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, former Indian ambassador to the US, Navtej Singh Sarna, scholar & critical theorist Homi K Bhabha; Harvard professor, New York-based Pulitzer Awardee poet Vijay Seshadri.
At the launch of the festival, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, Indian Ambassador to the United States said, "What the JLF brand has achieved over the last decade is a testament to the enduring power of ideas. Words and ideas continue to amaze us, amuse us, mesmerise us, and above all uplift us.
"This is why we never forget a good book or a nice movie or a powerful speech, or these days, an effective tweet or simply a striking sentence someone said over a cup of coffee. The JLF today is more than a literature festival - it brings together historians and poets, artists and musicians, dreamers and doers," he said.
Consul General at the Consulate General of India in Houston, Aseem R Mahajan said, "The 3rd edition of JLF Houston, which is virtual this time, brings together a rich bouquet of eminent speakers and acclaimed authors covering a range of subjects including science, humanities, politics, culture, history and contemporary issues".
JLF co-director Namita Gokhale said that the challenges of the changing times led them at the JLF to create and curate an incredibly rich and diverse digital platform that engaged both the local and the global, giving voice to writers, poets and thinkers as they celebrate books, dialogue and debate.
"Literature, ideas and knowledge are at the heart of our every effort to ensure a free flow of knowledge and information, especially in these times," Sanjoy K Roy, Managing Director, Teamwork Arts, Festival Producer said.
"We look forward to seeing everyone in-person at next year's event," he said.
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