Transatlantic Conversations

Transatlantic Conversations

As we veer into uncharted political waters with the rise of populism and growing distrust of mainstream media, we bring together American and Scottish authors and thinkers to shed light on social issues affecting all of us today. These conversations across the pond examine how contemporary literature can help us find common ground, innovative solutions and shared values. 

Supported by the U.S. Embassy London. 

 

Nona Fernández: Imagination Meets Evil

Saturday 13 August 12:15 - 13:15

  • Attend in person
One of a generation of Chilean writers who grew up under the brutal dictatorship of General Pinochet, Nona Fernández offers new perspectives on history. She appears at the Festival for the first time, discussing her novel The Twilight Zone –...
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Andrés N Ordorica’s debut collection, At Least This I Know, heralds the arrival of a fully-formed poetic talent onto the Scottish literary scene. Constructed around his identity as a queer, Latinx immigrant to Scotland, Ordorica’s poems offer a...
 

Margo Jefferson: The Art of Self-Construction

Sunday 14 August 20:15 - 21:15

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The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Negroland returns with Constructing a Nervous System, a memoir that is as far-ranging as it is intimate. The book takes its original form from moments of Margo Jefferson’s life that trouble her and restore her....
 

Deesha Philyaw: Between Herself and God

Tuesday 16 August 18:15 - 19:15

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Black girls and women take some time off from being on their Sunday best behaviour in The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deesha Philyaw. In these refreshing short stories, female lives are seasoned with desire, despite the restrictions imposed by...
 

Marlon James: A Fantastical Star

Tuesday 16 August 19:30 - 20:30

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  • Watch online
What does a writer do once they’ve won the Booker Prize? If you’re the indefatigable Marlon James, you embark on a wildly ambitious series that defies easy characterisation. The second in the Dark Star trilogy Moon Witch, Spider King draws...
 

Laura Bates & Winnie M Li: Misogyny Laid Bare

Friday 19 August 14:30 - 15:30

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  • Watch online
  • Captioned
In Winnie M Li’s novel Complicit, a former actress’s experiences at the hands of Hollywood mirror the real violence perpetrated in that arena. Fix the System, Not the Women by Laura Bates, founder of the Everyday Sexism Project, unveils the ways in...
 

Torrey Peters: The Remaking of the Family

Monday 22 August 20:00 - 21:00

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  • Watch online
Detransition, Baby, Torrey Peters’s Women’s Prize-longlisted debut novel, remakes a classic comedy of manners for the 21st century. When trans woman Reese is approached by her ex-partner Ames (who has detransitioned) with a tantalising chance at...
 

Imogen Binnie: The Great American Road Trip Reimagined

Tuesday 23 August 20:15 - 21:15

  • Attend in person
  • BSL interpreted
The publication of Imogen Binnie’s first novel Nevada in 2013 was a watershed moment in transgender fiction. Following a trans punk woman, Nevada reflects on gender, heteronormativity and social conditioning as its protagonist flits across America in...
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  • Watch online
In 2021, Torrey Peters became the first trans woman nominated for the Women’s Prize for Fiction – a milestone in the history of literature. Peters acknowledges that Detransition, Baby builds on the legacy of writers including Imogen Binnie –...
 

Ocean Vuong: I'm Here to Stay

Saturday 27 August 19:00 - 20:00

  • Attend in person
  • Watch online
  • Captioned
Ocean Vuong’s reckoning with the death of his mother – and the grief, trauma and love that attends such a loss – lies at the heart of his new poetry collection, Time is a Mother. Vuong’s work is infused with stories of migration, identity and...