6TH Islamabad literature festival scheduled for September
Islamabad-Every year, the capital gets its much-needed intellectual and cultural treat in the form of the annual Islamabad Literature Festival. Carrying on this legacy for the 6th time, the theme of this year’s ILF is ‘The Focus is Tomorrow: Reflecting on the Past’. The festival will take place on 27, 28, and 29 September 2019 at Islamabad.
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While speaking at a press conference, Arshad Saeed Husain, Managing Director, Oxford University Press shared some insightful details of the 6th ILF. He said that over 160 speakers and authors from Pakistan, UK, USA, France, Germany, Russia, and Sri Lanka will come together to add their valuable contribution to the event. There will be around 55 sessions, featuring talks, interviews, panel discussions, Urdu and English ‘mushaira’, sessions on Pashto and Punjabi writings, readings, author signings, performing arts, and documentary screenings. Moreover, around 8 book launches are planned this year which will be a highlight for book lovers.
The ILF organisers, Oxford University Press, also announced the names of the advisory board members who will be part of the 6th edition of the festival and oversee the festival programming and selection of speakers as well as curate the sessions. The Advisory Board comprises prominent writers, poets, and literary figures including Muneeza Shamsie, Harris Khalique, Iftikhar Arif, Mujahid Barelvi, Salman Tarik Kureshi, and Tahmina Aziz Ayub.
Arshad Saeed Husain, MD OUP while sharing his views about the upcoming festival said, “The 6th edition of ILF will be a treat in terms of not only literary works and poetry, but also because of fine arts, culture, and performing arts that will be showcased in it. Over the years, ILF has successfully provided an accessible intellectual space to the citizens of Pakistan. I believe that our society is moving forward at a rapid pace and to keep up with it, this year’s festival has the theme ‘The Focus is Tomorrow: Reflecting on the Past’. Based on the need of the hour, it will explore emerging trends, new concepts, and the impact of social media and technology on books, literature, publishing, reading, and our lives in general.”
Talking about her long association with ILF, the literary critic, Muneeza Shamsie said, “I am thrilled to be a part of the Advisory Board of the 6th ILF, which is a great milestone for our literary heritage. It is good to be with, and exchange ideas with a team, which has worked diligently to bring this festival. ILF gives us an opportunity to learn about and come across new authors and books, discover new ideas and respond to them in a constructive way. Through discourse and discussions, the Festival cultivates literary values, cultural diversity, and a sense of inclusion.”
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Anna Suvorova, Aamer Hussein, Julien Colameau, Peter Pannke, and Soniah Kamal are some of the international authors participating in the festival. The local literary luminaries, academics, and intellectuals to be featured in the 6th ILF include Afrasiab Khattak, Amin Gulgee, Arfa Sayeda Zehra, Asad Umar, H.M. Naqvi, Harris Khalique, Haseena Moin, Humayun Saeed, IftikharArif, Ishrat Husain, KishwarNaheed, Muneeza Shamsie, Mohammed Hanif, Najeeba Arif, Nasir Abbas Nayyar, Niilofur Farrukh, Noorul Huda Shah, Sania Nishtar, Salman Rashid, Yasmeen Hameed, Zehra Nigah, and Zafar UllahPoshni.
The first Islamabad Literature Festival was organised in 2013 and drew over 15,000 visitors. Continuing heritage of this literary event, OUP expects a footfall of more than 60,000 at this year’s ILF. Following its tradition, the festival will have free entry and will be accessible to people in an open and participatory manner.