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24th winternachten international literary festival the hague / 17-20 January 2019

During Winternachten festival writers and poets speak out about today's burning questions. From 17 up to and including 20 January 2019, the international literature festival presents conversations, prose, poetry, spoken word and films on thirteen stages all over The Hague. Over eighty authors from abroad and from The Netherlands take part in the festival. With the slogan Who Wants to Live Forever?, the 24th festival edition focuses on our future.

Winternachten international literature festival The Hague inspires with speaking, listening and thinking. During four winter days, conversations, reading and films invite to think about the bigger questions of our time. Since its first edition in 1995, the festival has grown to become the most important international literary event in The Netherlands where writers and poets speak about topical themes. Visitor, among which many neighbourhood locals and students, also actively participate with their own stories and poems.

'Who Wants to Live Forever?'
Every Winternachten festival edition focuses on a theme. This edition is marked by the ancient human longing for an eternal life in the light of contemporary technology. Guided by the slogan Who Wants to Live Forever? numerous authors speak about the relationship between humans and robots, about the impact of technological innovations and about hope and fear for the political future.

Meet prominent writers and poets from abroad and from The Netherlands
The festival welcomes from abroad, among others, writers Adam Zagajewski from Poland, Gioconda Belli from Nicaragua, Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi from Uganda, Leni Zumas from the US, Mohammad Rabie from Egypt, Jennifer Clement from Mexico, Ayelet Gundar-Goshen from Israel, Mark O'Connell from Ireland, David Van Reybrouck and Dimitri Verhulst from Belgium, Ramayana expert Arshia Sattar from India and South African rapper, spoken word artist and writer HemelBesem.

From The Netherlands some sixty writers, poets, spoken word artists and journalists join the festival such as Akwasi, Elfie Tromp, Youp van 't Hek, Ian Buruma, Nelleke Noordervliet, Radna Fabias, Aafke Romeijn, Damiaan Denys, Derek Otte, Auke Hulst, Hanna Bervoets, Simone van Saarloos, Rodaan Al Galidi, Lounar and Vamba Sherif.

The city is our stage: Winternachten all over The Hague
The grand festival evenings Friday Night Unlimited (Friday 18 January) and Saturday Night Unlimited (Saturday 19 January) constitute the heart of the festival. Visitors choose among 25 programs of each 30 to 60 minutes on 6 stages at Theater aan het Spui and Filmhuis Den Haag. At least half of these programs will be English spoken. This edition more films will be screened in collaboration with Filmhuis Den Haag.

Additionally writers, poets and spoken word artists perform during the festival period at The Hague venues such as Paard, Theater Dakota, the Speakers' Corner in the Haagse Hogeschool, the public libraries Schilderswijk and Nieuw-Waldeck, and the International Institute of Social Studies. Additionally, festival writers visit The Hague secondary schools to meet and discuss their books with students.

The Winternachten international literary festival The Hague is one of the activities of the Writers Unlimited Foundation.

Writers Unlimited
The Writers Unlimited Foundation brings together writers, poets, thinkers and academics from around the globe to speak about literature, arts, science and society. Every year in January, the Foundation organises the Winternachten international literature festival The Hague. From August till June, the Foundation organises, in collaboration with Bibliotheek Den Haag, the biweekly event B-Unlimited in the Central Public Library in The Hague. These activities would not be possible without contributions from the City of The Hague, the Nederlands Letteren Fonds, VSB Fonds, Fonds 1818 and other private funds, sponsors, donors and many volunteers.


see previous editions: