The programme for LitFestBergen 2022 is launched
Some highlights from the festival:
- Norwegian names like Linn Ullmann, Vigdis Hjorth, Nina Lykke, Abid Raja and Jan Kjærstad.
- Jon Fosse has been commissioned by LitFestBergen to write a new audio play, which will be premiered during the opening ceremony on 9 February.
- International guests from such nations as Greenland, Palestine, France, Scotland, Canada, Iraq, Kenya, the Netherlands and Mexico.
- The Norwegian championship in poetry slam is being staged in Bergen for the first time. Slam poets from the whole country will be competing to represent Norway in the European championship.
- And, not least – Literature Live Around the World, where 12 festivals in every continent participate live in a marathon virtual transmission, is being staged on Saturday 5 February. Presenters are Norway’s Mona B Riise and Britta B from Canada.
THEME 2022: DUST
The fourth Bergen International Literary Festival is turning the spotlight on dust.
"Our festival theme of Dust might seem grey and unpleasant, but it also encompasses the beautiful and the melancholic, the political and the dangerous," says festival director Teresa Grøtan.
"It’s both concrete and abstract, poetic and prosaic, and can span everything from stardust to desert storms and death. Dust is everywhere."
INTERNATIONAL: FEMINIST CRITICISM AND SLAVE HISTORY
“We’re very ready to receive international visits in Bergen again, and are keeping our fingers crossed that we’ll avoid further difficulties,” says Grøtan.
Pakistani-American Rafia Zakaria (appearing virtually) attacks the tunnel vision of western feminists, showing in her book Against White Feminism that their views have ties with colonialist and racist structures.
American lawyer and historian Rebecca Hall has uncovered the overlooked history about the key role played by women in organising slave revolts in the USA.
Niviaq Korneliussen, winner of the Nordic Council Literature Prize, will be participating virtually to talk about her book Blomsterdalen.
And Vanessa Springora attracted attention in France with her book Consent and the relationship she had at 13 with a 49-year-old author.
BOWIE, MICROMETEORITES AND DANCE
The 50th anniversary of David Bowie’s legendary Ziggy Stardust album falls in 2022. During the opening evening, Danish author and performance artist Madame Nielsen will present terrestrial and extraterrestrial characters and songs in Bowie’s catalogue, from Starman to Blackstar. On the opening day, we also meet Dylan Jones, former editor of GQ, who has written books about both Ziggy Stardust and Bowie.
An almost inevitable choice for a festival with dust as its theme is Jon Larsen, the phenomenal guitarist who has collected “stardust” – micrometeorites – from Norwegian roofs and become a highly unusual international scientist.
The festival also offers Dust, a new genre-busting work where poetry, newly choreographed dance and set design meet. It has been specially tailored for the visually and hearing impaired.
Other subjects addressed include the climate crisis, ageing, the desert, development assistance, the Bible, forgotten authors and the riches of language.
Once again, the festival is staging LitFest Mini – a children’s programme in collaboration with the Bergen Public Library – and LitFest Ung – a dedicated programme for lower and upper secondary schools.