PEN World Voices Festival, now in its fifteenth year, is America’s premier international literary festival, attracting the best known writers from across the globe. Since its founding, the Festival has presented more than 1,800 writers and artists from 118 countries speaking 56 languages in venues across New York City in a weeklong series of literary events with a human rights focus. This is the second time the Festival features Catalan author Najat El Hachmi.
Najat El Hachmi was born in Morocco and has lived in Vic, Catalonia (Spain) from the age of eight. She has a degree in Arab studies from the University of Barcelona. Through her writing, she channels her unease and approaches the two worlds to which she belongs. Her first novel, The Last Patriarch, was shortlisted for the Prix Méditerranée Étranger in 2009. Hachmi has recently published her long-awaited novel Mother of Milk and Honey. In 2017, she was part of the project Refugees Worldwide: Literary Reportage.
Wednesday, May 8, 7:00-8:30pm
McNally Jackson Booksellers 76 N 4th St Unit G , Brooklyn
Free, with RSVP
Participants: Pajtim Statovci, Christos Ikonomou, Najat El Hachmi, Anderson Tepper
The past century has seen an unprecedented movement of people across borders seeking refuge from war, famine, economic distress, or religious, political or personal persecution. Three European writers, each with personal experiences of migration, discuss their writings about the often perilous journeys and the uncertain welcome migrants and refugees face when they leave their homes in search of a better life. Najat El Hachmi writes a fictional account of her own childhood migration from Morocco to Catalonia in The Last Patriarch and essays on today’s refugees from North Africa. Christos Ikonomou’s Good Will Come from the Sea tells of the tough times that internal migrants face as they seek respite from economic distress in today’s Greece. Pajtim Statovici, himself a child refugee from Kosovo to Finland, deals with the challenges his characters experience in trying to feel at home in a new country, and even in their own bodies as they explore new identities in his novel Crossing.
Thursday May 9, 2019, 6:30-10:00pm
Westbeth Artists Housing and Center for the Arts
55 Bethune Street, New York
Residents of New York City’s historic Westbeth Center for the Arts open their homes to Festival-goers for this perennial favorite festival event. Join your fellow writers and readers in the West Village, grab a map, and wander through the hallways of the city’s oldest and largest artists’ community for intimate, salon-style readings and discussions by Festival authors, including Felicity Castagna, Inês Pedrosa, Rodrigo Rey Rosa, Pajtim Statovci, Najat El Hachmi, Wu Ming-yi, and others. This uniquely immersive literary experience concludes with a special reception in the Westbeth Gallery.
Presented with the Westbeth Artists Residents Council.
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