The Mountain’s Call to Literature Lovers

The Hindu

July 12, 2016

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The mountain’s call to literature lovers

What better location than Bhutan, a country renowned for its environmental conservation, to strike up a conversation about the impact of climate change?

The seventh edition of the “Mountain Echoes Literary Festival,” an initiative of the India-Bhutan Foundation to be held in Thimphu from August 26 to August 28, will open with a conversation on the impact of climate change. It will presented by Amitav Ghosh, the author ofThe Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable , a non-fiction book that summons us to confront the most urgent task of our times.

Talks

The festival plans to create a platform for confluence of art, music, literature and new media of both countries to serve as platform for debate, discussion, and cultural exchange in an idyllic location. The three-day event will include talks featuring a range of themes, including women’s voices, travel writing, and love and relationships.

The Women’s Voices event will have writers Anjum Hasan and Ira Trivedi in conversation with Namita Gokhale. They will discuss an anthology, Walking Towards Ourselves: Indian Women Tell Their Stories, to look at what it means to be a woman in India at a time of intense change.

The segment will also feature actor Tabu, in conversation with actor-model Kelly Dorji, about asserting her position in the cut-throat film industry in light of her recent films Fitoor and Haider .

Segments

The Travel Writing event will have writers sharing their experiences of climbing, trekking and exploring the less-trodden routes of Bhutan’s most ancient pathways. In the Love and Relationships section, Graeme Simsion will open the topic of love and relationships with his two books, New York Timesbestseller The Rosie Project and sequel The Rosie Effect , and the quest for the perfect partner and the DNA that works behind it.

Ms. Trivedi and Monu Tamang will also map the relationship landscape of India and Bhutan, where young people struggle with tradition and modernity as they fall in and out of love in the face of changing societal norms.

Workshops

A host of workshops — “How to tell a Good Story: Creative Writing Workshop” by Sonam Wangmo Jhalani; “Campaign Strategy: A Guide to Advertising and Brand Building” by Piyush Pandey; “In Focus: The World of Fashion Photography” by Maneesh Mandanna and “Sculpting the Spirit: Yoga Workshop” by Ms. Trivedi; “A Guide to Dzongkha: The National Language of Bhutan” by Yeshi Lhendup — will be part of the festival.

Commenting on the seventh edition of the festival, Queen Mother Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck of Bhutan said the festival has been a great catalyst for appreciation of literature in Bhutan.

“To discuss and debate key issues facing Bhutan today, education, climate change, rural-urban migration, and to consider our history through the medium of literature, art and culture is a wonderful prospect,” she added.

Seventh edition of “Mountain Echoes Literary Festival” will be held in Thimphu from August 26-28

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