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13-17 January: online Winternachten international literature festival The Hague featuring five live streams

Affiche Winternachten internationaal literatuurfestival Den Haag 2021 - vormgeving: Eindeloos
Affiche Winternachten internationaal literatuurfestival Den Haag 2021 - vormgeving: Eindeloos

The Winternachten International Literature Festival The Hague presents an online edition from Wednesday 13 to Sunday 17 January 2021. Every festival evening a live stream of 75 minutes starts at 20:30 hours. Each evening, writers and poets from the Netherlands and abroad speak about a different topical subject related to the festival theme 'It's up to us'. They will discuss the notion of an 'us'; climate justice; feminism and the Istanbul Convention; a less exclusively human-centred perspective on the Earth; activism and happiness.

This twenty-sixth edition of the Winternachten festival will feature, from the Netherlands, among others Arnon Grunberg, Eva Meijer, Simon(e) van Saarloos, Vamba Sherif, Radna Fabias, Raoul de Jong, Jaap Tielbeke, Munganyende Hélène Christelle, Benjamin Fro, Chihiro Geuzebroek and Nazmiye Oral.

From abroad the following authors, among others, will participate via live connections or pre-recorded video messages: Tsitsi Dangarembga (Zimbabwe), Alexis Wright (Australia), Koleka Putuma (South Africa), Salena Godden (UK), Mona Eltahawy (US), Dilâra Gürcü (France), Leena Norms (UK), Zsófia Bán (Hungary), Jens Meijen (Belgium), Mithu Sanyal (Germany), Sulaiman Addonia (Belgium), Annemarie Estor (Belgium) and Samanta Schweblin (Germany). In February and March 2021 an online 'slow festival' will feature more Winternachten programmes addressing these themes.

Programme information and admission tickets are available via A ticket for a live stream costs 5, 10 or 15 euro. Passe-partouts for five live streams cost 20, 40 or 60 euro. It is also possible to make a donation.

Overview evening programmes Winternachten festival 2021

Wednesday 13 January 2021: It's Up to Us & presentation of the PEN Award - In English
The question of us is central during this Winternachten festival. On our opening night Mirthe Frese will discuss this with writers Arnon Grunberg, Eva Meijer, Raoul de Jong, Tsitsi Dangarembga (Zimbabwe) and Samanta Schweblin (Germany). 'It's up to us' is a statement by philosopher, songwriter and author Eva Meijer. But: who is this us? And is it up to us? There are also - from Theater aan het Spui or their own location - contributions by poet, performer and activist Salena Godden (UK), writer and philosopher Simon(e) van Saarloos and writer and journalist Jaap Tielbeke. Afterwards, the PEN Award for Freedom of Expression will be presented to an author (to be announced), who - at the risk of her or his own freedom and life - is committed to freedom of speech, among other things.

Thursday 14 January 2021, #StillWeRise: Writing Climate (In)justice - in English
More and more authors are giving the climate and the climate crisis a prominent place in their work. Few venture into the subject of climate injustice or climate racism: Like no other, author Alexis Wright (Australia) makes it clear how much socio-economic position, skin colour and geographical location determine this. Writer and YouTube vlogger Leena Norms (UK), poet and spoken-word artist Sanam Sheriff (US), singer-songwriter Benjamin Fro and climate justice activist and filmmaker Chihiro Geuzebroek respond to Wright's work. De Gids-editor Fiep van Bodegom leads the discussion.

Friday 15 January 2021, #TheFutureIsFemale: The Female Convention - in English
It is up to us. This is what women in Poland and Turkey are demanding in their protests for gender equality between men and women, and for better protection against violence. After all, right-wing nationalist politicians in their countries want to withdraw from the so-called Istanbul Convention, which aims to prevent and combat violence against women. The Female Convention uses the literature to breathe new life into the convention with authors Dilâra Gürcü (France), Mona Eltahawy (USA), Mithu Sanyal (Germany), Zsófia Bán (Hungary), theatre-maker, actor and writer Nazmiye Oral, stand-up philosopher and theatre-maker Laura van Dolron and director of Atria, Institute on gender equality and women's history Kaouthar Darmoni. Journalist Nicole le Fever leads the discussion.

Saturday 16 January 2021, #BacktoEarth: Tout-monde - English
The term Tout-monde, introduced by the Caribbean poet and philosopher Édouard Glissant (1928-2011), is about the chaotic and therefore productive relationship between everything that exists in the world. In this programme animals, plants and objects from our world are given the floor. Sulaiman Addonia (Belgium), the queer transgender playwright Amahl Raphael Khouri (Germany) and Annemarie Estor (Belgium) give a voice to dear 'non-humans' in newly written stories, recited and filmed in their own habitat. Led by writer and journalist Chris Keulemans we talk live from Theater aan het Spui with writer and journalist Vamba Sherif about his vision on this subject, followed by a performance by anthropologist and singer-songwriter Shishani.

Sunday 17 January 2021, #SoulCare: Radical Happiness - English and Dutch spoken
Joy is an act of resistance is a slogan that is gaining more and more hearing. Can happiness be a form of activism? Is there resistance in the form of rest? These questions form the foundation for Radical Happiness; our soothing multidisciplinary closing programme that includes a conversation with poet and theatre maker Koleka Putuma (South Africa), poet Jens Meijen (Belgium), poet Radna Fabias, dancer and choreographer Gil Gomes Leal. writer and podcast author Mungayende Hélène Christelle and singer Bahghi; writer Hassnae Bouazza leads the discussion.

Writers Unlimited
Writers Unlimited Foundation brings together writers, poets, thinkers and scientists from all over the world to discuss topical themes in literature, art, science and society. Every year in January at the Winternachten International Literature Festival The Hague and throughout the year in programmes online or on location in The Hague. Writers Unlimited's activities are supported by City of The Hague, Dutch Foundation for Literature, VSBfonds, Dioraphte, Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds, Fonds 21, Lira Fonds, Stichting Vrienden van Writers Unlimited and Novotel Den Haag.

Posted on: Monday 28 December 2020