The Jakarta Post
Janet DeNeefe (right), founder of the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival, presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to writer Sapardi Djoko Damono during the festival’s opening ceremony in Puri Ubud, Bali, on Oct. 24, 2018. (JP/Anggara Mahendra)
The Ubud Writers and Readers Festival (UWRF) released the full list of speakers and programs for its upcoming edition, slated to be held from Oct. 23 to 27 across 70 venues in Ubud, Bali.
This year, the participants are coming from various countries around the globe, including Italy, Colombia, Cameroon, Thailand, Turkey, Portugal, Pakistan and more.
According to a statement received by The Jakarta Post, the speakers are to be from Italy, Colombia, Cameroon, Thailand, Turkey, Portugal, Pakistan and more. During the five-day program, they are to be involved in panel discussions, literary lunches, in-conversations, music and art performances, writing workshops and more.
Among the speakers are Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh, American writer and contributing opinion writer for The New York Times Lindy West, award-winning hip-hop artist Akala, journalist, author and Pulitzer Prize finalist Megan K. Stack and award-winning writer Lemn Sissay.
In addition to the aforementioned names, the event is to also feature Iranian-American writer Resa Aslan, Canada’s bestselling memoirist Lindsay Wong, Pakistani journalist and author Sanam Maher, Turkish author and translator Nazli Karabiyikoglu and Man Booker Prize nominated author and documentary filmmaker Guy Gunaratne.
Meanwhile, from Indonesia, renowned writers such as award-winning author and journalist Laksmi Pamuntjak, author and film director Richard Oh, veteran journalists Leila S. Chudori and Maria Hartiningsih, author Eliza Vitri Handayani and film director Garin Nugroho are scheduled to attend the event.
“Our milestone 15th year last year was very special,” said UWRF founder and director Janet DeNeefe. “It will be hard to beat. But there’s something in the air right now – a crackling hunger for diverse voices from lesser-known regions, for works in translation by people of color, for stories that open our eyes to worlds completely unlike our own.”
“For 16 years UWRF has prided itself on sharing these stories and now we feel like the global literary community is finally catching up. I think the fact that a relatively small and intimate event in Indonesia, which is delivered by a not-for-profit foundation, is now listed among the world’s best literary festivals is nothing short of extraordinary,” she added. (jes/kes)