Arundhati Roy (IN)

Thursday 31 May 2018 at 20:00 Dronningesalen
Danish writer Carsten Jensen and Arundhati Roy. Photo: Isak Hoffmeyer/Mayank Austen Soof
Danish writer Carsten Jensen and Arundhati Roy. Photo: Isak Hoffmeyer/Mayank Austen Soof

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Political activism and the challenges in the 21st century

The Indian writer Arundhati Roy really made a name for herself in international literary circles when in 1997 she published her debut novel The God of Small Things. The book became a worldwide bestseller and that same year it won the prestigious Booker Prize, awarded annually for the most original English-language novel.

Since her debut novel, however, Arundhati Roy has mostly been known as a political activist, and her literary works have mainly comprised political writings in the form of essays, many of them dealing with India’s problems in the age of global capitalism. In addition, she has been politically active within a wide range of areas connected with environmental issues and human rights. Often with the result that she has made herself unpopular with the Indian government.

In 2017, Roy returned to the literary scene with the publication of her second novel The Ministry of Utmost Happiness (to appear in Danish this spring), which spans the entire recent history of India. The novel deals with the emergence of modern India and the resulting human costs involved. It touches on such politically sensitive issues as the caste system, nationalism, fundamentalism, war and gender politics.

When Arundhati Roy visits Dronningesalen in The Black Diamond on 31 May, she will among other things speak about her political activism and the challenges we are facing as humans in the 21st century.

Arundhati Roy will discuss on stage in a conversation with the Danish writer and debater Carsten Jensen (b. 1952). Carsten Jensen has published a number of novels, critical essays, articles and travel accounts. With the travel accounts Jeg har set verden begynde (I have seen the world begin, 1996) and Jeg har hørt et stjerneskud (I have heard a shooting star, 1997) Carsten Jensen had his great popular breakthrough. With novels such as  Vi, de druknede (We, the Drowned, 2006) and Den første sten (The First Stone, 2015) he has become one of Denmark’s most-read writers, and his novels have also been sold to a large number of countries.