The festival, founded by the American poet Michael March, promises discussions, readings and signings with prominent authors of world literature, as usual.

We are condemned to hope

The festival has a new motto each year. The motto for 2020, which will mostly be reflected in debates with the guests, is the quote “We are condemned to hope” by the Italian writer Elsa Morante.

“Last year, when we were deciding on the motto for the 30th year, we could not have anticipated how current it would be,” Michael March, the festival director, says.


12 writers

12 writers will speak on the topic in Prague: the renowned Czech writer Jiří Hájíček; writer and journalist Daňa Horáková; Moroccan writer and painter Mahi Binebine; the Dutch writer Arnon Grunberg, known as one of the most subtly outrageous provocateurs in world literature; the Canadian writer Rawi Hage, who is a veritable ‘magician’ of literature; American poet Evan Kennedy; American novelist, essayist and storyteller Jonathan Lethem; Genoa native Claudio Pozzani; the prominent representative of contemporary Greek literature Ersi Sotiropoulos; and finally the American poet and soldier Brian Turner.


Nobel Prize winner

An important guest this year will also be the Nigerian poet, playwright and essayist Wole Soyinka, who became the first African winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1986.

His work includes dozens of plays, several poetry collections, novels, essays, literary studies and also some autobiographies. His strongest relationship, however, is with theatre.


Romanian poet

The Romanian poet Ana Blandiana, who is considered to be one of the leading figures of contemporary Romanian literature, also accepted an invite. She made her debut in the mid-1960s with the collection ‘First Person Plural’. Her work has been translated into twenty-six languages. At this year's festival, she will launch her first book in Czech.


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