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Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) at the British Library – Laughs, wise reflections, and uplifting music both Indian and Western…

Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) at the British Library – Laughs, wise reflections, and uplifting music both Indian and Western…

JLF is an inspiring place to be for the lovers of books and ideas – the 11th London edition of the original JLF (now 17 years old) brings together authors, historians, filmmakers, and business figures in an exciting exchange of ideas about past, present and future… Day 1 and 3 here (in short form and what acv was able to see) and Day 2 here (session summaries)

📚Three-day festival ends with musical theatre and three emerging West End British Asian musical theatre stars doing solos of famous Broadway/West End hits

📚 BBC broadcaster Mishal Husain talks about her new book, ‘Broken Threads: My Family From Empire to Independence’ inspired by her family history and discussed writing, inspiration and reflections – with fellow broadcaster and ‘Empire Podcast’ co-host Anita Anand. See ACV Instagram interview with Mishal Husain

📚 Retired diplomat and ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ author Vikas Swarup talks about writing career and latest book ‘The Girl with Seven Lives’ – releases in July in India – See ACV interview (Coming to Instagram soon)

📚 Comedian Nish Kumar and journalist Coco Khan do a live rendition of their popular podcast Left-leaning show, ‘Save the UK’, ridicule Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, blast Tories and worry about Left of the party (Jeremy Corbyn, Fazia Shaheen not being able to stand for party). Kumar jokes that they couldn’t get his friend and fellow comedian Romesh Ranganathan, lauds ‘Goodness Gracious Me’ quartet as primary inspiration for comedy career

📚 ‘Elizabeth’ (1998) film director Shekhar Kapur talks about his life in film with JLF producer Sanjoy Roy and says that making of that film was inspired in part by the way he thought about former Indian Prime Minster Indira Gandhi (1917-1984)

📚 Novelist Elif Shafak talked to William Dalrymple about her new novel ‘There Are Rivers in the Sky’ which is out only in August and is a story set in different time frames but linking three characters and a drop of water, she explained. Spoke about spirituality, democracy and human rights, as well as gender violence and equality.

📚 Sunday started with vocalist Supriya Nagarajan and tabla player Duncan Chapman

📚 Festival concluded with singers Hassun Sharif, Malad Hamidi and Ayesha Patel performing hit songs individually.

JLF international editions continue next with Spain in Valladolid June 13-16 and more international editions this autumn (see below for link) ♦ JLF in Jaipur 2025 January 30-February 3

Day 2 (Saturday June 8)

📚 Author of ‘A Bollywood State of Mind’ Professor Sunny Singh and film author and programmer Nasreen Munni Kabir discuss Bollywoo Vs independent cinema divide with moderator Yasser Usman; Professor Singh shares Amitabh Bachchan reaction to her BFI book on India’s biggest star; says he modulates message according to audience, able to communicate in English with Indian elites and relates differently to those who know only Hindi. Thrilled by acknowledgement after book was sent to him (2017).

For more on day 2 see –

Day 1 – (June 7) evening programme only (from 6pm)
📚 There were opening addresses from several figures including Indian High Commissioner to the UK Vikram Doraiswamy and JLF co-founder and novelist Namita Gokhale and Sanjoy Roy, MD of Teamwork Arts whose company produces the festival. The welcomes were followed by a short session moderated by author and journalist Shrabani Basu (‘Victoria and Abdul’) and among the panellists were film director Shekhar Kapur (‘What’s Love Got to Do with It?’), Vikas Swarup (Q&A which was made into ‘Slumdog Millionaire’) and Sarah Phelps (‘The Sixth Commandment’). Basu joked that between them the group had 20 Oscar nominations.

Our posts on X in real-time during the festival –

The festival’s next international edition moves onto Spain and the city of Valladolid from June 13-16 and then heads to the US and five cities in the US in September – starting with Houston

JLF London 2024 –


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Written by Asian Culture Vulture