The Amnesty International reading – Taslima Nasrin

I admit I only went along to the Amnesty reading on Saturday because Debi Gliori was one of the readers, and I wanted to catch up with her. But it was good, and I think I’ll go to more readings if and when I return.

Taslima Nasrin

Saturday’s author was Taslima Nasrin from Bangladesh. She’s not in jail, but she’s been banished from her country.

Between them Debi Gliori, Regi Claire, Chan Koonchung and Belinda McKeon read a number of poems and longer pieces, and they were wonderful. Not what I usually read, which made it all the more interesting.

Another positive experience was the feeling of international solidarity through having authors from different countries do the readings. It’s what Amnesty is about.

The one thing that marred the evening was that they over-ran and the last reading was stopped rather abruptly. I can see that they have other events starting, but considering the reason for the reading, it was unfortunate, and in this case I’d have preferred for the ‘advertising’ of the next evening’s reading to have been curtailed instead.

One response to “The Amnesty International reading – Taslima Nasrin

  1. I have also taken part in these readings and I found the experience extraordinarily moving. The readings are organised by PEN, with Amnesty International. PEN has fought for ninety years for the freedom to read and the freedom the write, both here and abroad. Last Sunday, I joined other writers to read the words of our brothers and sisters who cannot take part in this International Book Festival because they have been imprisoned, held under house arrest, ‘disappeared’, in some cases tortured and killed. We were reading in a place full of books and writers, with people free to read and write whatever they like. The readings are a reminder that we take such freedoms for granted at our peril.

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