The Language of Books


The DSC Jaipur Literature Festival 2013 is around the corner. Here's what's lined up.

Every January, Jaipur hosts literary pilgrims from all over India and the world at the DSC Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF). What started with a group of 14 people in 2006, where writers would be found supine listening to their peers, last year's 1,20,000 footfalls meant you were lucky if you could stand on two feet. JLF 2012 sizzled with Richard Dawkins, Oprah Winfrey and Salman Rushdie's ghost presence, and this year, around 280 authors, filmmakers, artists, theatre persons and other members of the creative industry will arrive to share stories, conduct worshops, launch books and meet their fans face to face. But above all, they will all be there for the love of the written word.

International Pullers From Booker Prize-winner Howard Jacobson to Padma Bhushan-winner literary theorist Homi K Bhabha, there is also Deborah Moggach, the author of These Foolish Things, which was made into the film The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, and Notes on a Scandal author Zoe Heller. Apart from the litterateurs, artists Marc Quinn, Anish Kapoor and William Kentridge will be there alongside acclaimed theatre director Tim Supple and Oscar-winning Pakistani-Canadian filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy. A segment celebrating the 50th anniversary of James Bond will feature Ian Fleming's biographer Andrew Lycett and Sebastian Faulks who authored Devil May Care, in the style of Fleming.

Regional Writers

Social activist and author Mahasweta Devi will give the keynote address, while writers such as Ambai, Sitanshu Yashaschandra and Udaya Narayana Singh will explore language and literary usage. Authors from the host state include CP Deval, Suman Bissa and Nand Bhardwaj. Literature around Buddhism finds enormous space in the schedule with an interesting segment on "Women on the Path" featuring authors from Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Nepal and India discussing the space for women in Buddhist theology. In fact, the festival opens with Buddhist chants by the Drepung Loseling Monks . Since literature is never complete without poetry, there would be Javed Akhtar sharing his thoughts on the ghazal, while other poets such as K Satchidanandan, Jeet Thayil and Tishani Doshi will also be heard playing with words.

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