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Culture Edinburgh International Book Festival

EIBF 2022: Simon Woolley: Shaking Up the Establishment Review

Simon Woolley’s 2022 book, SOAR: My Journey from Council Estate to the House of Lords tells the success story of Lord Simon Woolley, Baron of Woodford. SOAR is more than a “rags to riches” story, his determination to not only benefit himself but also encourage the achievements of other black people from deprived areas. Chaired […]

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Culture Edinburgh International Book Festival Literature

EIBF 2022: Abdulrazak Gurnah, ‘Migration, The Story of Our Times’

Though initially intrigued but nonetheless unfamiliar with Abdulrazak Gurnah and his work, I sat mesmerised by the Nobel Prize winner for the hour he had been allotted at the Edinburgh International Book Festival. The man, with fifty years of writing behind him along with a career in academia, carried with him none of the pretensions […]

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Culture Edinburgh International Book Festival Literature

EIBF 2022: Ottessa Moshfegh, ‘Power, Cruelty and Savage Faith’

You never want to hear an artist discuss the intricacies of their process too much: an overabundance of detail will detract from the intrigue of the piece and remove some of the capacity the audience has to attach their own views to the work. There is an element of this idea captured in the phrase […]

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Culture Edinburgh International Book Festival Literature

EIBF 2022: William Dalrymple, The Privatised Imperialists

On Sunday, as part of the Edinburgh International Book Festival, acclaimed author and historian William Dalrymple discussed his seminal work, published over a period of 20 years – The Company Quartet. In a talk that was both engaging and enlightening, Dalrymple delved into the history of the British colonisation of India and Afghanistan, with a […]

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Edinburgh International Book Festival

EIBF 2022: Nadifa Mohamed, For Whom is Justice Served?

For whom was justice served on the 3rd of September, 1952? Not for a soul, Nadifa Mohamed declares in her novel The Fortune Men. Released in 2021, the book focuses on the infamous case surrounding Lily Volpert’s murder in 1952, but in her talk at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, Mohamed also reveals its greater […]

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Fringe Literature

Edinburgh Book Festival: Black European Lives Matter

It’s not often that discussions of black identity come away from US-centric narratives, but Black European Lives Matter does exactly that, by giving an insight into what it means to be Black-British, and more widely, Black-European. All the panellists identify as Black-British: Derek Owusu as a black working-class Londoner; Johnny Pitts a black working-class northerner; […]

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Fringe Literature

Edinburgh Book Festival: Spectres of History

In Spectres of History, Deborah Levy speaks about her recently published book, The Man Who Saw Everything. The event is mainly a question-and-answer session led by the chair about the book, focussing on analysing the protagonist, Saul Adler. Adler is a narcissistic bisexual historian who has a strained relationship with his late communist father. As […]

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Fringe Literature

Mythos: A Trilogy review

Some tales will be nostalgic, most will recognise Odysseus’ ordeal with the Cyclops and the coup of the Trojan Horse. Other tales will be less well-known, but the elegance in Fry’s voice lulls the audience into embracing new tales as a child might embrace a bedtime story.  Greek mythology is quite entrenched within our culture […]