In an adaptive response to make literature accessible to bibliophiles and literature enthusiasts during lockdown, the World Book Day edition of the Kerala Literature Festival garnered more than 50K views on their YouTube channel, which broadcast the live streaming of the literature festival. First of its kind in Kerala, the one day live literature festival, was based on the theme ‘New Doors of Perception’ featuring eminent writers and critics.
The authors who were a part of the fest recognised the move as a way to connect with art and literature during the time of the nation wide lockdown. “Books doesn’t belong to the writer alone,” said the author and JCB prizewinner Benyamin speaking about books and copyright. The series began with an inaugural address by Prof. K Satchidanandan on Rethinking Modern Literature, which was an extensive talk that altered the existing norms about the same, as noted by one of the attendee. Dr. K Rajasekharan, S. Hareesh, author and critic Sunil P Ilayidom also took up sessions on the current health crisis, books and literature.
KR Meera who was a part of the series took one through the alchemy of life in her stories. Perumal Murugan, the voice of contemporary Tamil literature, revisited his timeline as a first generation learner, reader and writer.
“The lockdown pretty much says, go local,” opined the food vlogger Mrinal Das who was a part of the literature festival. Embracing a locavore kind of lifestyle will endorse better sustainability he noted. The evening session featured TD Ramakrishnan, who spoke about his upcoming novel based on Indian Railways and the need to write such a novel. This was followed by a recital by V. Madhusoodanan Nair, Deepa Nishanth in conversation with Lijeesh Kumar and C Ravichandran speaking about Religion in the times of Corona.