Lionel Shriver is a writer and Guardian journalist. In 2005 she won the Orange Prize for Fiction for her seventh novel, We Need to Talk About Kevin. She is also the author of The Post-birthday World, So Much For That and Big Brother, which reflects on the cult of the body, obesity and junk food, while also dealing with family relationships and the struggle against the self-destruction of the people we love. She will talk to Kirsty Lang about her latest work, The Mandibles. A family: 2029-2047.
The 30th Hay Festival coincides with the 500th anniversary of the reforms proposed by Martin Luther. In order to celebrate this important milestone in Western critical thinking, we have asked a number of thinkers to give us a “reform” that would be applicable now. Andrea Wulf will talk about the traditional distinction between the arts and the sciences, proposing a reformation of this classic separation of disciplines and questioning why the imagination is not present in science. Followed by a question and answer session with Peter Florence.
José Woldenberg, a political scientist and expert on the Mexican political system, presents Cartas a una joven desencantada de la democracia, a book that, in epistolary form, tackles the challenges, problems and complexities of Mexican democracy. A vital, critical book given the current political situation in which millions of young people, particularly young people, do not feel represented by their political system and in which it is necessary to question and analyse citizens’ participatory systems and institutions. In conversation with Sergio Ortíz Leroux.
Music and literature go together in the work of Joselo Rangel (Mexico), member of and guitarist with the legendary rock group Café Tacuba, whose songs are in Spanish. Author of the book of short stories One Hit Wonder (2015) and an astute journalist, Joselo will talk to Rulo about his double life as a rock star and writer.
The Bogotá39 2017 selection, promoted by the Hay Festival, seeks to focus attention on and celebrate Latin American fiction writers. At this event, the writers Carlos Manuel Álvarez (Cuba), author of La tribu; Brenda Lozano (Mexico), author of Cómo piensan las piedras and Felipe Restrepo Pombo (Colombia), author of Formas de evasion. In conversation with Mariana H.
In a time when anybody can write and be published without the need for editors or criteria, we ask what are the impulses that drive writers and what is the relevance of literature, from an intimate point of view, but also social and transcendental. Despite of the massive consumption and the standardised thought, our daily experience is still been defined by local idiosyncrasies. What is the role of the writers within this contradiction? What can we say here, from here, that cannot be said in other places? The texts included on this anthology could be read as an collective thought essay that tries to answer this questions.
Local and international poets offer readings of their work at the now traditional Hay Festival Querétaro poetry gala. With Hernán Bravo Varela (Mexico), Malika Booker (UK), Rocío Cerón (Mexico), Antonio del Toro (Mexico), Luis Felipe Fabre (Mexico), David Huerta (Mexico), Lee Maracle (Canada), Benjamín Moreno (Mexico), Johnny Payne (UK) and Horacio Warpola (México). Moderado por Fernando del Castillo.
Misha Glenny interviews the musician and activist, Nadya Tolokno (Russia), a member of the punk group Pussy Riot and arrested together with her partner in 2012 because of a performance in Moscow Cathedral. She was sentenced for crimes of religious hatred, and spent two years in jail, a sentence that became a symbol around the world for the Vladimir Putin government’s attitude to freedom of expression. She currently lives in Canada, where she continues to work as a human rights activist.
The Chilean astronomer, María Teresa Ruiz, recently given the L’Oreal-UNESCO Prize for Women in Science, is the author of the extraordinary Hijos de las estrellas. Un maravilloso recorrido sobre los orígenes del universo y del ser humano, which tells about the origins of the universe, where we are now, and how heavenly bodies are studied and explored. In conversation with the physicist Gerardo Herrera Corral.
David Rieff (United States) and Enrique Krauze (Mexico) will talk to Ricardo Cayuela about forms of political memory in the Latin American region, the advantages and disadvantages of promoting this exercise of looking at the past, and the link between history and recent political phenomena in countries such as Venezuela, Mexico and Colombia.
Dr. Luz María Lepe is a leading expert in indigenous literature, bilingual education, multiculturalism, oral/written cultures, and she is the coordinator of the MA in Amerindian Studies and Bilingual Education at the Universidad Autónoma de Querétaro. Lee Maracle is one of the most prolific aboriginal authors in Canada and a recognized authority on issues pertaining to aboriginal people and aboriginal literature. She is an award-winning poet, novelist, performance storyteller, scriptwriter, actor and keeper/mythmaker among the Stó:lō. Both will join in a conversation about the place of indigenous knowledges in Western higher education curricula Ingrid Bejerman.
Mexicans writers Fernanda Melchor and Antonio Ortuño speak with Emiliano Monge about their work. Fernanda Melchor, writer and journalist, has published recently Temporada de huracanes and Antonio Ortuño is the author, between others, of the celebrated El buscador de cabezas, published ten years ago.
The 30th Hay Festival coincides with the 500th anniversary of the reforms proposed by Martin Luther. So we have asked a number of thinkers to give us a “reform” that would be applicable now. Gabrielle Walker, a Doctor in Chemistry from the University of Cambridge and presenter of the BBC programme Planet Earth Under Threat, proposes a change in the way we look at “climate war”, considering a positive perspective to tackle the problem.
Óscar Martínez (El Salvador) is a journalist linked to the digital newspaper El Faro and the author of one of the most important books for understanding Central American migration through Mexico written in the last decade: The Beast. Riding the Rails and Dodging Narcos on the Migrant Trail. Returning to the complex situation of the inhabitants of Central American countries faced with the violence that surrounds them (gangs, state police forces, interfamily violence), Martínez presents Una historia de violencia: Vivir y morir en Centroamérica. In conversation with Arturo Wallace.
Ben Fountain (United States) is the author of the novel Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, recently made into a film by the director Ang Lee. This funny and moving story is set during an American football match and features a young soldier who is back in the United States to promote the American army’s work in Iraq. Just about to return to combat, he reflects on his life, the implications and complexities of the armed conflict, and the value of propaganda as well as people’s perception of a country when building a communal image. Also the author of the book of short stories Brief Encounters with Che Guevara, Ben Fountain will talk to Eduardo Rabasa.
Few family histories have captured the collective imagination in the same way as that of the Romanov dynasty. The family that governed Russia with an iron fist for four centuries abruptly disappeared with the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. The British historian Simon Sebag Montefiore, author of, among other books, Jerusalem. The Biography and Titans of History, tells in The Romanovs: 1613-1918, the story of this famous dynasty in the Russian Revolution’s centenary year. In conversation with Mariana H.
The seventh art is often based on quality screenplay writing, sometimes written by novelists or adapted by them from literary originals. What happens when a literary text is made into a screenplay? What are the differences compared with traditional writing? With Guillermo Arriaga (Mexico), Hanif Kureishi (United Kingdom) and Lionel Shriver (United States) in conversation with Ángeles González-Sinde.
Héctor Abad Faciolince has become an outstanding voice in contemporary Colombian literature thanks to books such as Tratado de culinaria para mujeres tristes, Basura and El olvido que seremos. His latest novel, La Oculta, tells the story of three brothers who are descendants of old colonialists. They love, and at the same time hate, their farm with its old house and dark lake, hidden in Jericó, the mountains of Antioquia.
The historian Norman Ohler (Germany) is the author of Blitzed. Drugs in Nazi Germany (2016), a book that analyses the systematic and organized consumption of drugs in the army and by high officials in the 3rd Reich, from the rank and file to Hitler himself. He will talk to Diego Rabasa about this practice, widespread among the Nazis, which had historical consequences whose effects we are still living with today.