Festivals United Kingdom

Tottenham Literature Festival 2021 kicks off on November 29.

The Tottenham Literature Festival 2021 happens at the Bernie Grants Arts Centre, London, UK from November 29 – December 5, 2021.

The Tottenham Literature Festival was founded by Bernie Grant Arts Centre Artistic Director & CEO Hannah Azieb Pool to celebrate the word and storytelling in all its glorious forms in 2019. It was aimed at providing a platform for Black writers to tell their own stories in a space where they are in the majority. Since it was started, it has hosted many of the leading artists in the UK and beyond including Emma Dabiri, Lemn Sissay, Keisha Thompson, Candice Carty Williams, Ify Adenuga, Derek Owusu, Maaza Mengiste, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Stella Dadzie, Jay Bernard, David Lammy, Gary Younge, Jessica Horn, Lola Shoneyin and Zukiswa Wanner.

The theme for 2021, which consists of both in-person and online events, is ‘revolutionary love’ – love of self, love of community and romantic love – and how, when it comes to Black communities, the very act of loving one another and ourselves can be radical, empowering and revolutionary.

Some of the featured guests are Bernardine Evaristo, Yomi Sode, Malika Booker, Kareem Parkins-Brown, Janett Plummer, Julianknxx, Lola Olufemi, Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah, Sheba Montserrat, Jessica Horn, Laurence Sessou, Alexandrina Hemsley, Veronica Mckenzie, Miss Jacqui, Theresa Lola, Nick Makoha and others.

Hannah-Azieb Pool said: “We are incredibly proud to welcome audiences and artists back for the third Tottenham Literature Festival and we have a dazzling line up that reflects the richness of Black storytelling. From the brilliant Booker prize-winning Bernardine Evaristo on her own personal Manifesto, to creative speed writing workshops, to a riotous retelling of children’s classic Rapunzel, we’ve got something for everyone.

“The theme of revolutionary love is a call to action after the last 18 months. I wanted us to gather around a theme that was inspiring and uplifting, yet still rooted in politics and community. Revolutionary love has the power to heal – and what better way to start the process than by hearing from some of our most talented Black authors?”

Building on previous years’ successes, the Tottenham Literature Festival has evening talks throughout the week, a schools day for over 100 children, a digital programme and a jam packed all day programme on Saturday, December 4 which audiences can access with an affordable Day Pass. On Festival Saturday there’s also plenty of free content, including the Black Book fair.

Smokey Okey will be bringing delicious food to Bernie’s Cafe/Bar bursting with flavours and tastes from Africa and the Caribbean, combining low-and-slow cooking techniques from America, to create what we call African Soul Food. There will be something sumptuous for everyone throughout the festival.

Hannah-Azieb Pool said: “With a hybrid programme of in-person and digital events in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, this year’s TLF is accessible and innovative. Lots of events are free, while the Saturday Day Pass is both brilliant and a bargain because we want all audiences, whatever their personal circumstances, to experience the joy and revolutionary love of the Tottenham Literature Festival.’

For more information on the events please click here.

By James Murua

This blog is run by James Murua a Nairobi, Kenya based lover of books.

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