Hay Festival Cartagena 2023

Welcome to the Hay Festival Cartagena de Indias 2023 programme, to be held from 26 to 29 January. In this page you can find the events in the general programme as well as Hay Joven activities tor university audiences, Hay Comunitario sessions which will take place in different areas of Cartagena, Reading Clubs and Talento Editorial.

The tickets of the general programme and reading clubs are on sale for in person events. If you wish to register to see the live streaming of events, please select the option "Register to watch online" when this option is available. Hay Joven, Hay Comunitario and Talento Editorial are 100% in person and free of charge.

If you have any issues regarding the payment of your tickets, please contact us at tickets@hayfestival.org or at +57 317 516 55 13.

If you are a students a wish to request free tickets, you can write to us at estudiantes@hayfestival.com.

If you have any general questions, you can find us at contacto@hayfestival.org.

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Event HJ18

Gerardo Meneses in conversation with Alexander Montes

Talking about war in times of peace

 Universidad de Cartagena, Claustro de la Merced (Salón Eréndira)
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Gerardo studied Literature at the Universidad Pedagógica Nacional and has written over 20 books. He has received a range of national and international prizes, recently being ‘highly recommended’ by Fundalectura and put on the IBBY List of Honour, Greece (2018). On this occasion, Meneses will talk about his children’s novels La luna en los almendros, El rojo era el color de mamá and Bajo la luna de mayo, which deal with children and the Colombian armed conflict. He will talk to Alexander Montes.
This event has taken place
Gerardo Meneses in conversation with Alexander Montes

Event HJ17

Josefa Sánchez Contreras and Gabriela Wiener in conversation with Daniella Sánchez Russo

Explorers, dreamers and thieves

 Universidad Tecnológica de Bolívar (Sede Manga) - Auditorio Jorge Taua
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In 2022, the Hay Festival and the British Museum teamed up to create the anthology Volver a contar: escritores de América Latina en los archivos del Museo Británico, in which a group of ten writers delved into narratives on the past using a collection of Latin American objects in the museum, a collection never seen by the public. In 2023 we present the anthology Exploradores, soñadores y ladrones, in which six fiction writers visit the museum’s collection to come up with a new compilation of texts that question and reimagine the predominant narratives.With the sociologist and activist Josefa Sánchez Contreras (México) and the writer and journalist Gabriela Wiener (Perú), in conversation with Daniella Sánchez Russo.
This event has taken place
Josefa Sánchez Contreras and Gabriela Wiener in conversation with Daniella Sánchez Russo

Event 37

Carolina Aguado Serrano and Jesús Sanjurjo in conversation with Ricardo Chica Gelis

 Centro de Formación de la Cooperación Española (Salón del Rey)
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Two historians talk to Ricardo Chica Gelis about events closely related to the history of Cartagena de Indias. With Carolina Aguado Serrano (Spain), an art historian and part of the technical coordination team for exhibitions and publications of the Dirección de Colecciones Reales de Patrimonio Nacional (Spain); she is co-author (alongside Mariela Beltrán García-Echániz) of La última batalla de Blas de Lezo, a comprehensive historical revision of the mariner's story. Jesús Sanjurjo (Spain) will talk about his book Con la sangre de nuestros hermanos. Historia del abolicionismo y del fin del comercio de esclavos en el Imperio español, 1800-1870, in which he sets out the complex history of abolitionist and anti-abolitionist discourses in Spain and the Spanish-speaking Caribbean during the 19th century. The study covers the ideological, political and diplomatic battle that occurred up and down the Atlantic in order to ban the slave trade in the last years of the Spanish Empire.

This event has taken place
Carolina Aguado Serrano and Jesús Sanjurjo in conversation with Ricardo Chica Gelis

Event 42

Alfonso Múnera in conversation with Raúl Román

The shared Caribbean, the shared Pacific. The history of the sea and ocean between Colombia and Panama

 Centro de Formación de la Cooperación Española (Salón del Rey)
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The Cartagena native Alfonso Múnera (Colombia) is a Doctor in Latin American and Caribbean History from the University of Connecticut; he has been Colombian Ambassador in Jamaica and in Trinidad and Tobago, as well as General Secretary of the Association of Caribbean States. He has written three essential works for understanding Colombian history: El fracaso de la nación, Fronteras imaginadas and La independencia de Colombia: olvidos y ficciones. He will talk about his work with Raúl Román.

This event has taken place
Alfonso Múnera in conversation with Raúl Román

Event 54

William Ospina and Andrea Wulf in conversation with Natalia García Freire

 Centro de Convenciones (Salón Barahona)
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Two writers, through fiction and non-fiction respectively, tell the life of the German explorer and naturalist Alexander von Humboldt, considered to be one of the fathers of modern geography. The acclaimed writer William Ospina (Colombia) presents his latest novel, Pondré mi oído en la piedra hasta que hable (2022), which deals with the time that the explorer spent in Colombia (from Cauca to Quindío, and from Magdalena to Barú). The historian Andrea Wulf (Germany/UK), winner of the 2013 Eccles Centre & Hay Festival Writer's Award, is the author of the lauded biography of von Humboldt, The Invention of Nature (2016), a book that follows his footsteps up the world’s highest volcanoes, his trip along the River Orinoco, and his journeys to Siberia and even Cartagena de Indias. In conversation with Natalia García Freire.

Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available

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William Ospina and Andrea Wulf in conversation with Natalia García Freire

Event 55

Philippe Sands in conversation with Javier Ortiz Cassiani

 Teatro Adolfo Mejía
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Philippe Sands (UK) talks to Javier Ortiz Cassiani about The Last Colony, a book about the Chagos Islands, which describes and censures the role of the UK in the expulsion of its native inhabitants in the 1960s. This prominent lawyer and human rights expert has not only documented these events, but also explores how the unjust acts have affected the lives of the inhabitants of the archipelago to this day, making a call for reparation of this colonial past.

Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available

This event has taken place
Philippe Sands in conversation with Javier Ortiz Cassiani

Event 63

Simon Sebag Montefiore in conversation with Andrea Bernal

 Centro de Convenciones (Auditorio Getsemaní)
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The family forms us and is one of the aspects that all societies have in common. In The World: A Family History, the historian Simon Sebag Montefiore (UK) shows us the history of humanity through some of its most important family dynasties. Starting with the fossils of the footprints of a family who walked along a beach 950,000 years ago, the author will examine some of the families that have given shape to our world: from the Medici and the Rothschilds to the Churchills, the Kennedys, the Kims and many more. In conversation with Andrea Bernal.

Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available

All Sunday events will be free for people who has an ID expeded in the Bolívar Department. You must request their courtesy tickets at the box office of the Hay Festival (CCCI) showing your ID, between 22 and 28 of January.

This event has taken place
Simon Sebag Montefiore in conversation with Andrea Bernal

Event 77

Carl Henrik Langebaek in conversation with Juan Carlos Flórez

 Teatro Adolfo Mejía
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The anthropologist, archaeologist and historian, Carl Henrik Langebaek (Colombia), lectures at the University of the Andes and is the author of the books Antes de Colombia, which covers 14 thousand years of history before the arrival of Columbus, and Conquistadores e indios. La historia no contada, which examines the conquest and colonization of the Americas with a critical viewpoint, understanding it as a complex process that has little to do with the simplified version we usually learn. The author offers a broad, fresh view on how cultures and communities interacted, the role of women, and dismantles some myths about how this process, particularly in the tropics, occurred. In conversation with Juan Carlos Flórez.

All Sunday events will be free for people who has an ID expeded in the Bolívar Department. You must request their courtesy tickets at the box office of the Hay Festival (CCCI) showing your ID, between 22 and 28 of January.

This event has taken place
Carl Henrik Langebaek in conversation with Juan Carlos Flórez

Event HC13

Javier Ortiz Cassiani in conversation with Raúl Ballesteros

 La Canoa Literaria
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The historian Javier Ortiz Cassiani received an award for Afro-Colombian of the year in the Media and Journalism category in 2014. He has been an advisor to the Ministry of Culture, the National Centre for Historical Memory, of the Truth Commission, the Cartagena de Indias Historical Museum and Cartagena University’s Claustro la Merced cultural space. He is the author of El incómodo color de la memoria, Un diablo al que le llaman tren and his recent Bailar con las trompetas del apocalipsis, a book that imagines the Caribbean from the point of view of the personal and the collective, looking at its recent past and observing the unstoppable passage of time. He will be in conversation with Raúl Ballesteros.
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Javier Ortiz Cassiani in conversation with Raúl Ballesteros

Event 79

Cristina Fuentes La Roche, Wanjiru Koinange and Angela Wachuka in conversation with Margarita Valencia

South to South: cultural management

 Centro de Convenciones (Salón Barahona)
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We are interested in cultural management projects that manage to unite quality programming with inclusion and innovation. Book Bunk (in Nairobi, Kenya) is precisely that: a cultural project for the recovery of public libraries with profoundly positive impacts on the communities where it works. The Hay Festival International Director, Cristina Fuentes La Roche (Spain), Wanjiru Koinange (Kenya) and Angela Wachuka (Kenya) will talk to Margarita Valencia about the challenges of their projects and about international collaboration among countries of the South.

Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available

All Sunday events will be free for people who has an ID expeded in the Bolívar Department. You must request their courtesy tickets at the box office of the Hay Festival (CCCI) showing your ID, between 22 and 28 of January.

This event has taken place
Cristina Fuentes La Roche, Wanjiru Koinange and Angela Wachuka in conversation with Margarita Valencia

Event HJ27

Jesús Sanjurjo in conversation with Santiago Colmenares

 Museo Mapuka - Universidad del Norte (Barranquilla)
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The young academic Jesús Sanjurjo (Spain) will talk about his book Con la sangre de nuestros hermanos. Historia del abolicionismo y del fin del comercio de esclavos en el Imperio español, 1800-1870, in which he sets out the complex history of abolitionist and anti-abolitionist discourses in Spain and the Spanish-speaking Caribbean during the 19th century. The study covers the ideological, political and diplomatic battle that occurred up and down the Atlantic in order to ban the slave trade in the last years of the Spanish Empire. He will talk about this original piece of research, one that has received the recognition of the Journal of Global Slavery. In conversation with the History professor Santiago Colmenares.
This event has taken place
Jesús Sanjurjo in conversation with Santiago Colmenares

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RCN
Bancolombia
Promigas
Sura
Fontur Colombia
Colombia el Pais de la Belleza