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The Gibraltar Lecture: Writing and the Adventures of the Mind SOLD OUT

Saturday 29 March 2014

1 Hour


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Ticket price

Booker winner and one of modern literature’s most gifted storytellers Ben Okri talks about his writing and the ‘adventures of the mind’ in the festival’s inaugural Gibraltar Lecture. Okri is considered one of the foremost African writers of the post-modern period. At 21, he published his first novel, Flowers and Shadows, and in 1991, The Famished Road, which won the Booker Prize for Fiction.

The Famished Road features a narrator, Azaro, a spirit child who, in the Yoruba tradition of Nigeria exists between life and death. The novel plays on the tension between the land of the living, with its violence and political struggles, and the temptations of the carefree kingdom of the spirits. Azaro features in other Okri novels. The mixture of the real and the spiritual worlds, in which he particularly draws on the myths and beliefs of his African heritage, has often led Okri to be categorised as a magical realist, although it is a categorisation he rejects.

Okri has published eight novels, as well as collections of poetry, short stories and essays, and his work has been translated into 20 languages. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and has been awarded the OBE as well as numerous international prizes, including the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Africa, the Aga Khan Prize for Fiction and the Chianti Rufino-Antico Fattore.

The Gibraltar Lecture will be delivered every year at the festival, and will take the forms of an address, an ‘in conversation’ or a debate. The lecture will be devoted to matters of major cultural, historical or international importance, at the invitation of Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar.

The Hon Neil Costa MP, Minister for Tourism, Commercial Affairs, Public Transport and the Port, HM Government of Gibraltar, will introduce the event.