Jaipur Literature Festival Turns 10

Jaipur Literature Festival 2017


The much awaited literature festival of the year, the Zee Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) is slated to commence on 19th January, 2017, and will continue for 5 days till 23rd January. The JLF turns 10 this year and the past decade has seen it grow into the world’s largest free event of its kind. A time when the literary enthusiasts of the world can all be found at one place, this festival is synonymous to equity and democracy when some of the world’s greatest minds, humanitarians, historians, politicians, business leaders, sports people and entertainers from all walks of life together on stage.

Diggi Palace where the event is to be held is all set to transform into a carnival of some of the most intelligent minds. The event will see some brilliant minds from India, as well as across the world, getting together sharing their thoughts and musings.

This year there is not one but several themes. The sessions at the JLF will revolve around themes including ‘The Freedom to Dream’, India @ 70, The Magna Carta, Translation and World Literature, Women and Marginalised Voices, Sanskrit, and Colonialism and the Legacy of the Raj. The sessions will see famous and known personalities of the literary world, as well as budding authors showcasing their talent and sharing a synopsis of their work.

This year keeping the recent demonetisation in mind, the JLF has partnered with FreeCharge to go cashless and ensure convenience and efficiency at the venue.

Activities Not To Be Missed

  • Fans of the written word are in for a treat with an eclectic mix of speakers, which includes the first time Man Booker prize winner Paul Beatty; Bollywood stalwarts Rishi Kapoor and Javed Akhtar; renowned poets Anne Waldman and Ruth Padel; great historians Linda Colley, Barry Cunliffe and David Armitage and iconic economists Ha-Joon Chang and Nassim Taleb.
  • ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival 2017 will see excellent art installations by renowned artistes such as Subodh Gupta, Jagmohan Mathodia and Rohit Chawla. While Subodh Gupta will be see tranforming everyday objects like bicycles and utensils into art forms, Rohit Chawla’s signature style includes converting a quiet corner at the Diggi Palace into a makeshift photographic studio of sorts, and Jagmohan Mathodia will be displaying his versatile creations at the festival.
  • Heritage Events which runs parallels to JLF and is free for all will bring arts and culture together with the performance of Ustad Amjad Ali Khan on sarod, Vidya Shah and actor Luke Kenny presenting their compilation of song and poetry; and Anne Waldman and Swanand Kirkire bringing together voices from two sides of the globe.
  • ‘Rhythm and Rhyme’ and ‘Mujre Se Multiplex Tak’ will hosted at the archaic Hawa Mahal and Amber Fort .
  •  There will be exciting historical sessions at the Magna Carta Gallery in the presence of the Magna Carta expert, Dr. Claire.
  • An assortment of bands and singers will be performing in a musical evening at Hotel Clarks Amer.
  • Gastronomic delights including Kachori and samosa, and of course the famous Pushkari chai will help you keep your energy levels high to keep up will the myriad activities of the JLF.
  • The JLF Bazaar will also keep the compulsive shoppers happy with a wealth of antique jewellery, traditional jootis and fabrics. The traditional craftsmen will also have for you unique crafts that showcase their versatility and skill of combining tradition with a new design language.

Speakers at JLF

This year JLF expects an attendance of more than 250 authors, thinkers, politicians, journalists and popular culture icons. While some speakers are festival veterans, there will also be debut appearance by many this year. The following are the speakers you absolutely must not miss.

  • Gulzar– Writer, lyricist and filmmaker, Gulzar has spoken to a packed house in the past and it shall be no different this year.
  • 2016 Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sellout, Paul Beatty will be making his first appearance this year.
  • Veteran actor Rishi Kapoor will be talking about his life and cinema after the recent release of his autobiography.
  • Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush, daughter of superstar Rajnikanth will be speaking about the book she has recently written, Standing on an Apple Box, that narrates the story of her life.
  • Shashi Tharoor will be speaking about his new book An Era of Darkness: The British Empire in India.
  • Vikram Chandra, author of books like Geek Sublime, Love and Longing in Bombay and Red Earth and Pouring Rain. Chandra’s book Sacred Games has been acquired by Netflix to turn into a full-fledged series.
  • Swanand Kirkire, Lyricist, singer, composer and actor and a two-time National Award winner for best lyrics.
  • Vaasanthi, a renowned Tamil author, journalist and columnist. Her latest book is based on Late Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Jayalalitha and has been aptly titled as Amma: Jayalalithaa’s Journey from Movie Star to Political Queen.
  • Sadhguru, a yogi and a mystic will as usual charm the packed house with his words of wisdom.


An eclectic mix of music artists are set to perform morning and night at the five day literary extravaganza of JLF. The performances will take place at the Front Lawns at Diggi Palace in the morning and the Music Stage at Hotel Clarks Amer in the evening. The musicians slated to play are as follows:

  • The Shillong Chamber Choir.
  • Master drummer of Rajasthan, Nathoo Lal Solanki.
  • Swanand Kirikire and Ankur Tiwari.
  • Padmini Rao.
  • Devashish Dey.
  • East Meets Middle East including Subrata Bhattacharya (tabla) and Abhisek Lahiri (sarod) with Ronnie Malley (oud) and George Lawler (percussion).
  • Rajasthan Josh
  • Neeraj Arya’s Kabir Café
  • Bombay Bassment.
  • Inna Modja.
  • Soulmate
  • Beth Orton & Sam Amidon
  • Lisa Hannigan
  • Aga Khan Music Initiative Ensembl
  • The Raghu Dixit Project

Visit as the “Friend of the Festival”

Literary buffs have the option of attending the JLF as a ‘Friend of the Festival’. The purchase of the Royal Delegate pass will allow the pass-holder a chance to interact with the literary heavyweights. Lunch is free and you can experience the music every evening as well as dance the night away at the Writer’s Ball. The pass also gives access to exclusive extra sessions at Amber Fort and Hawa Mahal. ‘Friends of the Festival’ will get special festival discounts on accommodation at select hotels.

The ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival provides a potentially life-changing opportunity for audiences from Rajasthan, across India and the world to learn from and exchange ideas with contemporary literary stalwarts.

It is time for all the literary buffs to clear their calendars for the period of JLF and enjoy the company of the stalwarts of the literary as well as the musical world and broaden their own horizon.


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