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CN Lester 600x400


City Of Literature Weekend: our highlights

One of our favourite parts of the Norfolk & Norwich Festival (and there are many!) is the fantastic City of Literature programme of events, and in particular the City of Literature weekend, which this year falls on 26 – 28 May.

Don’t miss three days of literary events with fantastic thinkers, writers and activists who have really made their mark. Taking place in Chapelfield gardens (with many taking place inside the quirky Adnams Spiegeltent), it’s a weekend of decidedly different, interesting events. Here are our highlights for each day:



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Image: Lydia Cacho © Marco Alar

John Bew, Professor in History and Foreign Policy and prize-winning author of Citizen Clem, will be in discussion with his historian father (and writer on Churchill) Paul Bew, a Professor of Politics, on two fascinating characters and past Prime Ministers of England: Winston Churchill and Clement Attlee. (Churchill Vs. Attlee - 10am, Adnams Spiegeltent).

From England to Mexico, Speaking Truth to Power features two Mexican journalists - Lydia Cacho and Anabel Hernández – as they reveal the shocking corruption and violence of the Mexican government. This is the annual Harriet Martineau lecture. Cacho and Hernández's conviction to try and help their country and improve the way it's viewed across the world is hugely admirable, and draws strong parallels with Harriet Martineau, who spoke openly against corruption and slavery in Britain and America, campaigning for many causes in her lifetime.

In the evening join Mark O’Connell as he discusses whether “technology can solve the modest problem of death” and explore our body’s limits. This event shares its name with the title of Mark’s book, To Be a Machine, and is bound to be a truly fascinating event!

Other great events to watch out for today: Sharks and Surfboards; A Manual for Heartache; Life After Tiananmen Square.



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Image: CN Lester

Kick this jam-packed day off with Trans Like Me at 11.30am. Join academic and trans-activist CN Lester, who'll be discussing trans issues and what it means to be a transgender person today.

At 1pm Satire and Protest, with critically acclaimed graphic novelists Hannah Berry and Isabel Greenberg, will focus on satire and protest and how influential graphic novels can be.

Later (6pm) join author Jon McGregor (Even the Dog; Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things) as he discusses his first novel in seven years, Reservoir 13. He’ll reveal hidden aspects to the novel and take the audience on a real journey in this fantastic event!

Other great events to watch out for today: Revolutions; Ways of Seeing, The Art of Observation.



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Image: Ian Cobain There are lots of great events today, but two we’re particularly excited about are Russia and Revolution and Your Country is Lying to You.

Your Country is Lying to You (12pm) features former investigative journalist Ian Cobain demonstrate how successive governments are essentially perpetuating a culture of secrecy here in Britain. Definitely one to make you question your beliefs in our government, both present and past, and it looks incredibly interesting. Don’t miss it!

Then at 1.30pm historian Robert Service marks the 100th anniversary of the Russian revolution and explores the history of the last Tsar of the Russias, Nicholas II, taking us through the final 18 months of his life and reign in Russia and Revolution.

Other great events to watch out for today: Anne Boleyn; Writing the Fringes.




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