India's Jaipur Literature Festival (17-21 January), one of the world's largest events dedicated to literature and the arts, will this year host over 240 Indian and international literary figures, among whom are Shereen El Feki, Egyptian-Welsh journalist and author of Sex and the Citadel: Intimate life in a changing Arab world
and Camillia Sobhy, first undersecretary of state for foreign cultural relations at Egypt's Ministry of Culture.
Participants from the Arab region will include Iranian-American author Reza Aslan, Algerian nomadic cult band Tinariwen, as well as India's well-known television journalist Bharka Dutt, who extensively covered the Arab Spring from Egypt in 2011.
Of the remarkable figures to take part in the festival is 1998 Nobel Laureate in Economics Amatrya Sen.
Among the festival attendees will be Amish Tripathi, the popular author who visited Egypt during the 2013 India by the Nile Festival; SR Faruqi, writer and modern Urdu’s most celebrated critic; Salma, representative of Tamil literature; John Ralston Saul, Canadian author and president of PEN International; Chandra Prakash Deval, renowned Rajasthani poet and translator; Somali-born British novelist Nadifa Mohammed; and British-Chinese novelist and filmmaker Xiaolu Guo, among many others.
The speakers, however, are not limited to renowned poets, playwrights, novelists, translators, editors and journalists -- many of whom will lead the debates and round tables -- as this year's Jaipur Festival organisers also reached to numerous creative and influential minds from among political and environmental activists, economists, historians, film producers, theatre makers, artists and musicians.
During the five-day festival, a large number of discussions and debates will be held in six parallel venues, bringing a large assortment of fascinating themes and topics: from presentation of life in Roman times to the great painter Caravaggio; from concepts of scriptwriting to the art of storytelling, topped with discussions on social choices and freedom, globalism and dictatorship of reason, Orientalism and media narratives, to name but a few.
The festival's core organiser is Teamworks Arts, an entertainment company with a large portfolio of artistic events organised across the globe and also the company behind the India by the Nile Festival which takes place in Egypt.
Among the Jaipur Literature Festival participants who will visit Egypt during the 2014 edition of India by the Nile are Urvashi Butalia -- director and co-founder of Kali for Women, India's first feminist publishing house -- and Javed Akhtar, poet, lyricist, scriptwriter and one of Bollywood's best-known songwriters.