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Top Literary Events in May

Top Literary Events in May

7 May 2017 Cristina Macari

Literary London is quite a mix this month – from an evening infused with powerful, socially and self-exploratory poetry to the inaugural edition of a festival of football writing (yes, this is a thing!). There’s a series of stimulating discussions on the debatable subject of intellect and technology, or the classic combo of poetry and … beer. Plenty of enjoyment and controversy for all bookish fans!

The VINTAGE Poetry Showcase at Waterstones Piccadilly

It must be the general spirit of revival, the blooming of everything and a certain feeling of hope that makes May a month more suitable for poetry than any other. Waterstones promises to take the mood to wonderful poetic heights in an evening of readings, followed by discussions with some of the most notable figures in contemporary poetry – Ocean Vuong, Kayo Chingonyi and the award winning winning poet R.A. Villanueva, who will be hosting the event.
 
The American poet Ocean Vuong will be reading from his debut collection Night Sky With Exit Wounds, a selection of poems exploring the ideas of social identity in contemporary America, sexuality and the family as axis mundi. To both complement and contrast, the Zambian-British poet Kayo Chingoni, in his debut compilation Kumukanda, examines the above ideas within the social and political context of contemporary Britain.
 
The VINTAGE Poetry Showcase takes place on Wednesday 10 May, 6:30pm at Waterstones Piccadilly
 
London Festival of Football Writing at Waterstones Tottenham

Football and literature are not two words we see together very often and that is precisely what the people behind this festival are trying to change. For five days, the basement of Waterstones Tottenham Court will be filled with journalists, authors and sports commentators discussing the present and future of women’s football in England, analysing football strategies and tactics or examining the historical evolution of the game in different parts of the world and its impact on certain communities.
 
Each event will contain a series of discussions, followed by a Q&A session and, if you’re lucky, book signing by the authors present at the event.
 
The London Festival of Football Writing takes place from 16-20 May at Waterstones Tottenham
 

ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival at the British Library


 
The British Library Festival is a small-scale replica of the ‘greatest literary show on Earth’ that takes place every January at Diggi Palace in Jaipur, India. The London version of the festival consists of a two-days series of events on South-Asian literature, including debates, discussions, readings and performances.

The festival covers a large range of subjects – poetry; the history of Mughal art; migrant issues; Indian politics; and a special evening of contemporary Indian folk-fusion music with Kabir Café. Among the authors and artists confirmed for this year’s festival are the Indian singer, writer and social activist Vidya Shah, the Mexican talk show personality Guillermo Rodriguez and the British historian, journalist and specialist on popular histories of India John Keay.
 
The ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival takes place on 20 – 21 May at the British Library


 
Intellect in the Age of the Internet at Libreria


Image Credit: Iwan Baan
 
How intellect and critical thinking can evolve when faced with the almost furious technological evolution of the past few decades and its impact over our reasoning, both as individuals and as collective entities inside a society, is probably the most analysed theoretical issue of our time.
 
Libreria holds a free event in which Australian theorist McKenzie Wark and Italian theorist and activist Franco ‘Bifo’ Berardi discuss the position of the thinker in the Internet-dominated world and the possible future intellectual authorities. McKenzie Wark is the author of General Intellects – a book that examines the concept of the public intellectual and its role in shaping up societies, while Franco Berardi’s work is focused mainly on media and technology and their function in the post-industrial world.
 
Libreria is an independent bookshop in East London with a wonderful design based on Borges’ concept of ‘the Library of Babel’, a soy-based risograph printing machine in the basement (that you can use during their workshops) and a constant mix of relaxing, enticing and inspiring events (among which is Beer & Browse: European Poetry Night).
 
The Intellect in the Age of the Internet event takes place on Tuesday 23 May, 7:00pm at Libreria Bookshop
 
Greenwich Book Festival


 
Now in its third year, the Greenwich Book Festival brings together some brilliant contemporary authors for a very promising series of debates, readings and creative workshops at the end of May. The mix of free and ticketed events take place at the University of Greenwich, in its beautiful Thameside buildings, and the Old Royal Naval College - which you’ll be able to explore during an architectural site tour.
 
Among the writers taking part in this year’s festival are Sarah Perry, the award-winning author of The Essex Serpent, and Lisa McInerney – author of The Glorious Heresies and winner of the 2016 Bayles prize. The workshops cover a varied set of practices and skills including calligraphy, origami, the art of writing a crime series, how to make comics and monster-finger puppets. You can also learn how to publish a novel and self-promote as a writer andvalongside the demanding intellectual events and creative classes will be kids activities, food, drinks and entertainment.
 
Greenwich Book Festival takes place from 26-27 May at the University of Greenwich and Old Royal Naval College

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