In Bangladesh we work closely with the Hay Festival, a celebration of literature and ideas. Every year the Hay Festival hosts 15 literary festivals in countries across 5 continents including Bangladesh, Hungary, Ireland, Spain, Kenya, the Maldives, Lebanon, India, Colombia, Libya, and in its original location in Wales. The British Council launched a global partnership with Hay Festival in 2010 and we work together to bring the UK's best authors and thinkers to an international audience.
In 2011, the inaugural Hay Festival in Dhaka took place in the grounds of the British Council at Fuller Road. The one-day pilot festival brought together writers and thinkers from Bangladesh and the UK to share stories and ideas in the spirit of Rabindranath Tagore in his 150th anniversary year, and was host to a programme of readings, book launches, and literary panels.
The festival has since grown to span three days and takes place in the historic grounds of Bangla Academy. The interconnectivity of words and images and fresh forms of expression were some of the themes in 2013. The programme included local and international authors, writers, graphic artists and activists. The British Council had the pleasure of inviting novelists Ned Beauman and Tamima Anam to Dhaka, listed as two of the best young novelists by Granta. We also played host to graphic novelists Karrie Fransman and SJ Harris, and they took part in a series of educational visits to schools in Khulna and Cox's Bazar.
November 2014 will again see some of the world's leading thinkers and writers come to Dhaka for the Hay Festival. For more information on the upcoming festival, please contact us.