Does the writer have a commitment that must be put into action? If so, what are the spaces she or he can and should occupy? Three of Latin America’s most outstanding writers will talk to the journalist Marta Orrantia about the relation between writing and activism from their personal experiences. Mauro Javier Cárdenas (Ecuador), Juan Esteban Constaín (Colombia) and Emiliano Monge (Mexico).
With the support of the Mexican Embassy
Pablo Boullosa, communicator, writer and presenter of the television programme La dichosa palabra, offers a lecture based on his book El corazón es un resorte: Metáforas y otras herramientas para mejorar nuestra educación, reflecting on the elements of daily life (emotions, experiences, imagination) which help to improve our knowledge.
Science and fiction are two very different ways of understanding life, but sometimes making the distinction can be difficult. Wade Davis (United States), anthropologist, ethnobotanist, author and photographer who works with different indigenous cultures; and Miguel Pita, a Doctor of Genetics and Cellular Biology from UAM (Spain) and also director of a number of short films and documentaries, will talk about the situations and stories in which science seems stranger than fiction. In conversation with Gabrielle Walker.
For the Spanish neurologist, Jordi Montero, who in 2017 published the book Permiso para quejarse, what is behind chronic pain is emotion. We do not take into consideration our own culture when we have physical pain treated, nor do we listen to our own bodies. From a rigorous and optimistic point of view, this doctor has helped us to understand ourselves as humans and our reality, based on neurology and the relationship between the brain and pain. He will talk about these matters with the intellectual and Minister of Health and Social Protection. He will talk with journalist Hassan Nassar.
Fiona Mozley is an Irish author finalist for the ManBooker Prize with her debut novel Elmet. Lisa McInerney is an Irish writer, author of Glorious Heresies and The Blood Miracles, and winner of the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction. They will talk about their work with Peter Florence, founder of the Hay Festival.
All cultures are a response to the same question: what does it mean to be human and alive? The anthropologist and National Geographic Society resident explorer, Wade Davis, winner of a Samuel Johnson Prize, celebrates the wisdom of indigenous cultures in his latest book, The Wayfinders. From the sailors who settled in the Pacific ten centuries before Christ, to Borneo, where a nomadic way of life survived. In this way, the author encourages appreciation of cultural diversity.
Up to what point do our genes affect our day-to-day decisions? Can genetics determine what is going to happen to us? Miguel Pita, a Doctor in Genetics and Cellular Biology, researcher and lecturer at Madrid’s Autonomous University and a regular visitor to universities in the United States, Chile and Australia, looks at these questions in his latest book: El ADN dictador. He will talk about genetics and its immense importance for us all, with Liliet Heredero.
What is the media’s responsibility in this era of false news and disinformation? Alejandro Santos, editor of the magazine Semana; Luke Harding, journalist in The Guardian; and Yolanda Ruiz, producer of RCN Radio’s morning news programme, will talk about this and other matters with the British editor and journalist Alec Russell.
Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available
The Spanish writer Luisgé Martín, the writer Giuseppe Caputo (Colombia), and Verónica Ferrari (Peru) will talk with José Luis Ramos Salinas about a matter that divides many Latin American societies. The fiction of Martín, who also writes articles for various newspapers, in part deals with the complexity of sexuality from an intimate viewpoint. Ferrari is considered an important figure in the LGBTQ struggles as in the peruvian feminist movement. In 2016 she actively joined the march Ni una menos in Lima. She is currently in charge of the Itinerant Feminist School, a pedagogical proposal that seeks to spread feminism throughout Peru, especially among young and adolescent girls.
The contribution of cultural journalism to the critical and intellectual debate of a country can give us many clues to that place’s critical culture. Two cultural journalists from three different countries and with long careers, will talk to the cultural journalist Inés Martín Rodrigo about their particular form of understanding this kind of communication. With Jesús Alejo (Mexico) and Mónica Maristain (Argentina).
The novels and essays on art and photography of Teju Cole (United States/Nigeria) have been praised by publications such as The New York Times, The Guardian and Time magazine. In his most recent work, Blind Spot, Cole plays with a mixture of photography and text. Natalia Majluf is an art historian and director of the Museo de Arte de Lima. Lucho Lama is a curator and art critic for the El Comercio newspaper. These three experts will talk to Carlo Trivelli about the art of photography in contemporary culture.
The Spanish writer and journalist, Sergio del Molino, author of La España vacía, which won the Madrid Booksellers’ Prize for non-fiction, and the Cálamo Prize for best book of the year, will talk to Xavi Ayén about this book and his new novel, La mirada de los peces. The novel starts with a text about his charismatic mentor, the activist Antonio Aramayona, a defender of public education, the lay society and the right to die a dignified death, and becomes a dialogue with the past and with the author’s own memory.
Cervantes and Shakespeare are alive and well. In many ways, Cervantes was the creator of the modern novel, while television dramas and film still use dramatic formulas created by Shakespeare. Salman Rushdie is the author of such well-known books as The Satanic Verses, Midnight’s Children and Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-eight Nights. Carmen Boullosa is a Mexican novelist, poet, playwright and essayist, author of the novels Las paredes hablan, Texas: The Great Theft and La otra mano de Lepanto, among others. They will talk about two of the most important writers of all time, and what they mean to the present.
Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available
In this fascinating work of non-fiction, the writer José Gordon takes us into an exercise of the imagination, in which science and literature, with their respective instruments, probe into a universe which challenges all our notions. With first-hand information from major scientists like Roger Penrose, Leonard Susskind and the Physics Nobel Laureate, George Smoot, we find the most audacious maps of our time, which aim to open new windows onto nature. These investigations, some of which are controversial, have the mystery and attraction of a good literary story skilfully mixed with the explorations of fiction writers like Isaac Bashevis Singer, Amos Oz and Fernando del Paso, who also follow the dream of a level of existence beyond the borders of space and time: Borges’s Aleph looms into view! The inconceivable universe, marvellously illustrated by Patricio Betteo, invites us to look through the keyhole at a memorable poetic and scientific journey of many strings and dimensions that will resonate in the reader’s imagination. In conversation with Inés Martín Rodrígo.
One of the concerns of Alejandro Gaviria as the Minister of Health and Social Protection has been to regulate euthanasia in order to guarantee the right to a dignified death. He tackles this matter, and others, in his book of essays Alguien tiene que llevar la contraria. Gaviria, who has managed to bring new perspectives to some aspects of the health system, including spraying with glyphosate and the price of medicines, will talk to the journalist María Elvira Samper about this thorny question.
In Jerusalem: The Biography, Simon Sebag Montefiore (United Kingdom) tells the story of the city that is holy for three religions. This book was a Sunday Times number one bestseller and also won a Book of the Year Prize from the Jewish Book Council (US). Sebag Montefiore is a Doctor in Philosophy and an expert in Russia and the Middle East, as well as the relations between both regions and the West. In this conversation with the BBC journalist Liliet Heredero, he will talk about aspects of his book and his particular relationship with Jerusalem.
A literary performance in which the writers, on stage, talk through their own characters. In each session, a dialogue is established between the artist Ignasi Duarte and, in this case, Cristina Rivera Garza. Duarte will pose a number of questions asked by the characters of the other author’s books. The project seeks to dramatize writing, not by representing a text, but in order to obtain a new story based on the literature itself.
Three authors who combine writing with other occupations, in this case publishing, journalism and language teaching, talk about what it means to move between the different worlds in which they live and work. They will also talk about their latest books with the literary critic and columnist Camilo Hoyos: Mariana Torres, Diego Erlan (Argentina) and Eduardo Plaza (Chile).
La cláusula Balcells, by Pau Subirós, tells of the life and career of the legendary literary agent Carmen Balcells, through the testimonies of the writers Mario Vargas Llosa, Juan Marsé, Eduardo Mendoza, Carme Riera, Javier Cercas, Isabel Allende, Wendy Guerra, Daniel Vázquez (Vázquez Montalbán’s son); the publishers Ricardo Rodrigo (RBA), Malcolm Otero (Carlos Barral’s grandson) and Juan Cruz; the literary agent Antonia Kerrigan; Rodrigo García (Gabriel García Márquez’s son); Carmen Miracle (Álvaro Mutis’ widow); Ángeles González-Sinde (former Minister of Culture); and people who were close to her, such as her brother Joan Balcells, her son Lluís Miquel Palomares, her driver Dionisio Avilés, and the Agencia Literaria Carmen Balcells astrologer, Guiomar Eguillor. Scripted by Xavi Ayén and Pau Subirós and produced by Neus Ballús. Pau Subirós, co-writer, will be present.
Duration: 59 minutes / Language: Spanish
José Alejandro Restrepo is one of the most consolidated creators of national contemporary art. During his studies in the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris he had personal contact with thinkers such as Deleuze and Foucault, became interested in their approaches and discovered the work of emblematic video artists such as Bill Viola and Gary Hill, who asserted his interest in video instalations as the proper means for his research. Since 1988 he has become a pioneer using this technique in Colombia. His work´s second basic aspect is the profound investigation he carries out into national history. He displays his works regularly throughout Europe, Latin America and the US.
In conversation with Juan David Correa, Director of ARCADIA.
The writer and academic Rubén Gallo (Mexico) has a passion for the work of Marcel Proust, one of the greatest writers in the history of literature. In Search of Lost Time (1913-1927) is Proust’s best known work and in it, through great introspection, the writer offers a reflection on his life. Gallo, Professor of the Language, Literature and Civilization of Spain at Princeton University, is the author of Proust’s Latin Americans. He will talk to Guadalupe Nettel about this renowned author’s relationships with Latin Americans.
Irish writer Michael Collins, author of ten works of fiction translated to seventeen languages, will speak to Jenny Valentine about his life and literature. His novel The Keepers of Truth was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the IMPAC Award. His latest book The Death of all Things Seen was the Irish Times Book of the Month in March 2017. Collins is an ultra-runner. He was the captain of the 100k Irish national team. He has ran and won races of that length in Mt. Everest, Antarctica and the Sahara desert. His literature´s fountain for the past decade has been the decline of the American dream in the gigantic rural spaces of the most powerful country in the world and the mark that has left on common people.
The levels of economic, gender, police and organized criminal violence in Latin America are among the highest in the world. Literature is one of the few ways of fleeing from it or responding to it without perpetuating its vicious circle. In this discussion, three of Latin America’s finest writers will talk about the degree to which the writings of the region’s writers are permeated in this violence. Jesús Miguel Soto (Venezuela) and Luciana Sousa (Argentina), authors from the Bogotá39 selection, will talk to Marta Orrantia about these matters.
Few family histories have captured the collective imagination as much as the history of the Romanovs. The family that governed Russia with an iron hand for four centuries disappeared abruptly with the Bolshevik revolution of 1917. The British historian Simon Sebag Montefiore, author of, among others, Jerusalem and Titans of History, talks about The Romanovs: 1613-1918, which tells the story of this unique dynasty in the Russian Revolution’s centenary year. In conversation with Xavi Ayén.