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Literature. Poetry. Culture
Goethe Darbaar

Goethe Darbaar © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

A celebration of literature, poetry and the arts — experience readings, performances and conversations with local and international writers, poets and artists at the event series Goethe Darbaar.

Past Events

Goethe Darbaar © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

Let’s Speculate: Fiction and the real world

Speculative fiction transcends the boundaries of reality, offering writers a canvas where imagination knows no bounds. But why does this fantastical realm often resonate more deeply with our understanding of reality than straightforward realism?

In this engaging event, esteemed author and filmmaker Samit Basu, known for works like "The Jinn-Bot of Shantiport", "Chosen Spirits", "Turbulence" and the GameWorld Trilogy, joins writer Gigi Ganguly, acclaimed for her thought-provoking narratives such as "One Arm Shorter than the Other" and "Bio Peculiar," to unravel the mysteries of speculative fiction. Together with moderator Rishi Majumder, they will explore how speculative fiction serves as a conduit for writers to articulate truths they couldn't express otherwise, hiding profound insights beneath the cloak of the supernatural.


Samit Basu © Samit Basu

Samit Basu 

Samit is an Indian author and filmmaker. His most recent novels, published by Tor in North America, are The Jinn-Bot of Shantiport and The City Inside. He’s published several novels in a range of speculative genres, beginning with The Simoqin Prophecies (2003). He also works as a director-screenwriter, comics writer, and columnist.


Gigi Ganguly © Gigi Ganguly

Gigi Ganguly

Gigi has a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Limerick in Ireland. Her first book, a novella titled One Arm Shorter Than The Other, was published by Atthis Arts in 2022. Her second book, a short story collection titled Biopeculiar, was published by Westland in 2024. She is currently working on a novel about AI and consciousness.


PENNING LAUGHTER: A HUMOROUS TAKE ON CONTEMPORARY INDIAN SOCIETY

Goethe Darbaar © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

Why is humour such a valuable tool for examining and depicting people and society? What sets apart Indian humour writing? Khyrunnisa A. and Aravind Jayan, distinguished authors renowned for their wit and humour across generations, will provide fresh insights into individual behaviours and societal structures, encouraging readers to see them from novel angles. These topics, coupled with personal insights, will be delved into during discussions with our moderator Rishi Majumder.


Khyrunnisa A. © Khyrunnisa A.

Khyrunnisa A.

Khyrunnisa is an award-winning writer of children’s fiction and the author of the hilarious Butterfingers books. Howzzat Butterfingers! (2010) is the first novel in the series. She created the popular comic character Butterfingers for Tinkle. Her first book for adults is Tongue in Cheek: The Funny Side of Life (2019). The Lizard of Oz and Other Stories (2019), The Crocodile Who Ate Butter Chicken for Breakfast and Other Stories (2020) and Baby and Dubdub (2021) are some of her recent books. She is a full-time writer and lives in Trivandrum.


Aravind Jayan © Aravind Jayan

Aravind Jayan

Aravind is a writer from Trivandrum, Kerala. He is the winner of the 2017 Toto Funds the Arts Award and was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize in 2021. His first novel, Teen Couple Have Fun Outdoors, was named ‘Best Book of 2022’ by Open Magazine, The Wire, Deccan Chronicle and others. It was also shortlisted for the Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction.


Talking the rap, Rapping the words

Goethe Darbaar: Talking the rap, Rapping the words © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

Everyone’s been talking about Indian rap but how does one define this? What are the themes and subjects it covers and what urgent stories does it tell? What does Rap bring to storytelling in terms of rhythm and rhyme? Where does Indian rap fit in when it comes to an array of Indian literary and creative forms? And finally, where did India’s rap scene come from? What is its history and what are its roots and influences?


Rupleena Bose © Rupleena Bose

Rupleena Bose

Rupleena Bose is an Associate professor of English Literature and published writer, screenwriter, translator and poet whose PhD thesis was on urban music in modern Bengal. She is currently based in Delhi. Her novel titled Summer of Then will be published in the coming year.


Sumit Roy © Sumit Roy

Sumit Roy

Sumit is a tri-lingual rapper and a visual artist currently based out of New Delhi. Roy juxtaposes an aspirational visual universe and the cult of global stardom with quotidian sights and attitudes from his immediate locale.


Diving into the Future

Goethe Darbaar © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

29.09.2023, 18:00

What will become of us in the future? Will there be even a collective “us”, or will we be billions of “I”? Modern Society can feel busy and lonely simultaneously. The endless ocean of social media and our obsession with self-image may lead to dual realities - a combination of dystopian truths, and utopian lies.


Julia von Lucadou © Julia von Lucadou

Julia von Lucadou

Julia von Lucadou was born in 1982 in Heidelberg, Germany. She holds a PhD in film studies and has worked as an assistant director, a television producer, and a simulated patient. Her first novel "The High-Rise Diver" (OT "Die Hochhausspringerin") was awarded the Swiss literature prize and shortlisted for the Swiss book prize. It has been translated into English, Italian and French.


Ashish Karnawat © Ashish Karnawat

Ashish Karnawat

Ashish Karnawat, a versatile performing artist, combines contemporary and hip-hop dance with physical theatre to create relatable performances that incorporate everyday human behaviors and humor while delivering social and political messages, blurring the line between performer and audience.


READING PICTURES: INNER WORKINGS OF COMIC MAKING

GD © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan New Delhi

Together with comic writers and artists Sarnath Banerjee and Anupam Arunachalam, we explore the symbiosis of art and literature in this issue of Goethe Darbaar. How do words and images intertwine to create profound narratives? Join the moderator Lakshya Datta and the two artists as they delve into the realm of visual storytelling.


Sarnath Banerjee © Sarnath Banerjee

Sarnath Banerjee

Banerjee has authored five graphic novels published by Penguin and Harper Collins, with a sixth in progress supported by a grant from the Berlin Senate. His work has been showcased at prestigious Biennales, Art Fairs, and international shows.


Anupam Arunachalam © Anupam Arunachalam

Anupam Arunachalam

Anupam is a Delhi-based writer, illustrator and comic book artist. His work has been published by Penguin Random House, Tinkle, Pratham Books, Forbes Life, Mint and Campfire Graphic Novels, among others. He is currently working on the Young Pandavas series of children's books, published by Hachette India.


Unseen Connections

Goethe Darbaar: Unseen Connections © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

In this edition of the Goethe Darbaar, we delve into the connections between places and stories with celebrated poets and authors Sampurna Chattarji and Janice Pariat. Our moderator, Lakshya Datta, will lead the conversation exploring the interplay between writers and readers, and the harmony between verse and prose.


Janice Pariat © Janice Pariat

Janice Pariat

Janice is an author, soap-maker, knitter, and seeker of forests. Her most recent novel "Everything the Light Touches" was listed in The New Yorker's Best Books of 2022 and won the AutHer Award 2023 for Best Fiction. She teaches at Ashoka University and is based between New Delhi and Shillong.


Sampurna Chattarji © Sampurna Chattarji

Sampurna Chattarji

Sampurna Chattarji is a poet, fiction writer, editor, and translator with 21 published works, including "Space Gulliver," "Dirty Love," and "Wordygurdyboom!," as well as editing the anthology "Future Library" and releasing her most recent poetry collection, "Unmappable Moves."


What Women Want

Goethe Darbaar: What Women Want © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

In conversation with podcaster Lakshya Datta, we welcome economist Shrayana Bhattacharya, author of Desperately Seeking Shahrukh, to discuss her book and explore possible answers to the question: what do women want? The conversation is coupled with a 30-minute play 'Power Within’, directed by veteran theatre writer-director Dilip Shankar.


Shrayana Bhattacharya © Shrayana Bhattacharya

Shrayana Bhattacharya

Shrayana Bhattacharya is a Senior Economist at the World Bank. Her first book of non-fiction Desperately Seeking Shah Rukh: India's Lonely Young Women and the Search for Intimacy and Independence was published by HarperCollins India in November 2021 and by Liberty Books in Pakistan in August 2022. 


Lakshya Datta © Lakshya Datta

Lakshya Datta

Lakshya Datta is a writer and founder of Launchora, a storytelling platform and narrative podcast company. Lakshya also hosts Jaipur Bytes - the Jaipur Literature Festival podcast. He was named India’s Top Podcaster of 2021 by JioSaavn.


Cities Within

Goethe-Darbaar: Cities Within © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

Is a city a place, its people, or its memories? How much of who we are, what we create is influenced by where we come from, where we’ve been? Do we carry our cities within?

In conversation with podcaster Lakshya Datta, we welcome writer and journalist Taran Khan to talk about travel, memories, and the art and artists they influence. Join us for this session accompanied by music and poetry by Afghan artists.


Taran Khan © Jonathan Page

Taran Khan

Taran N. Khan is an award-winning journalist and writer. Her work has appeared in publications including Granta, Guernica, LitHub, Al Jazeera, The Caravan and Himal Southasian. Her first book, Shadow City: A Woman Walks Kabul won the Stanford Dolman Travel Book of the Year Award and the Tata Literature Live! First Book Award.


Lakshya Datta © Lakshya Datta

Lakshya Datta

Lakshya Datta is a writer and founder of Launchora, a storytelling platform and narrative podcast company. Lakshya also hosts Jaipur Bytes - the Jaipur Literature Festival podcast. He was named India’s Top Podcaster of 2021 by JioSaavn.


Music & Lyrics

Goethe Darbaar © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan New Delhi

Music & Lyrics

Music is a universal language which everyone understands, but very few possess the gift to create.

We know how we feel when we hear a song we love, but what do we know about how that song or melody came together? What comes first to a songwriter - the lyric, or the melody? How does it feel to be on stage with the eyes of the crowd on you? Does a song come from within, or somewhere beyond?

In conversation with Podcaster Lakshya Datta, we welcome musicians Komorebi and Dhruv Visvanath to tell us stories about and behind the music & lyrics!


Komorebi © Puru Mehta

Komorebi

Komorebi (Tarana Marwah) is an Indian producer, composer, singer and multi-instrumentalist. She released her first self-titled EP in 2015, after which the act gained mercurial success. Some of her notable performances are SXSW 2022 & 2019, Treefort, Red Bull, Tour Bus, NH7 Weekender including projects for Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.


Dhruv Visvanath © Mayank Sharma

Dhruv Visvanath

Dhruv Visvanath is a Singer-Songwriter, producer and accomplished acoustic guitarist from New Delhi. His unique style of playing the guitar led him to be mentioned as one of Acoustic Guitar Magazine’s 30 Great Guitarists Under 30, alongside the likes of Ed Sheeran.


Freedom

Goethe Darbaar X Freedom © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan

August 15, 1947. Independence. Partition. The birth of a nation.
But what did it mean to become independent? Who was responsible for ensuring that India becomes a country? How were 565 princely states integrated into the Indian Union?

Featuring historian and author Narayani Basu in conversation with podcaster Lakshya Datta, this session will explore the formation of modern India, the legacy of its architect VP Menon - and through his eyes, portraits of historical figures Gandhi, Jinnah, Nehru, and Patel.

Goethe Darbaar X Freedom also celebrates the launch of Freedom - an online platform commemorating 75 years of India's independence with 75 contributions. Freedom brings together artists, authors and thinkers from India and Germany to explore what freedom means to individuals and societies in a modern democracy.


Narayani Basu © Narayani Basu

Narayani Basu

Narayani Basu is the bestselling author of V.P. Menon: The Unsung Architect of Modern India (Simon & Schuster India, 2020). A historian and foreign policy analyst, her current area of interest focuses on highlighting less-known key players behind the story of Indian independence.


Lakshya Datta © Lakshya Datta

Lakshya Datta

Lakshya Datta is a writer and founder of Launchora, a storytelling platform and narrative podcast company. Lakshya also hosts Jaipur Bytes - the Jaipur Literature Festival podcast. He was named India’s Top Podcaster of 2021 by JioSaavn.


Partition: Love & Legacy

Partition: Love & Legacy © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan New Delhi

Partition: Love & Legacy is framed to examine the partition of India, and its repercussions, felt across the subcontinent even today. In conversation with Podcaster Lakshya Datta, the session will explore the works of the authors Aanchal Malhotra and Karuna Ezara Parikh. Their work collectively, through fiction and actual testimony both, attempts to heal the wounds left behind by the largest human migration on Earth and to continue to tell stories of love, as opposed to violence, from the time, to aid a future of communal security and peace.


Aanchal Malhotra © Aanchal Malhotra

Aanchal Malhotra

Aanchal Malhotra is an oral historian and writer from New Delhi, India. She is the co-founder of the Museum of Material Memory, and writes extensively on the 1947 Partition and its related topics.


Karuna Ezara Parikh © Karuna Ezara Parikh

Karuna Ezara Parikh

Karuna Ezara Parikh is a poet and writer, former television anchor and model known widely for her activism. Her writing has featured in publications including Vogue, Wire, Outlook, Tehelka and Lonely Planet.


Flights of Love

Flights of Love © Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan New Delhi

Friday evening is for poetry and conversations! Inspired by short stories of best-selling author Bernhard Schlink, Flights of Love is woven around the idea of love.

Join us for an entertaining evening with our flights of love Vikramaditya and Akhil Katyal, in conversation with Podcaster Lakshya Datta.


Vikramaditya © Vikramaditya

Vikramaditya

Vikramaditya is a teacher and researcher. They have previously worked at Centre for Law and Policy Research (Bengaluru), Tata Institute of Social Sciences (Mumbai) and Ambedkar University (Delhi). They live and love in Delhi. 


Akhil Katyal © Akhil Katyal

Akhil Katyal

Akhil Katyal is the author of "Like Blood on the Bitten Tongue: Delhi Poems" and "How Many Countries Does the Indus Cross". He lives in Delhi.


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Contact

Priyam Gupta
Assistant Librarian and Project Coordinator
Tel.:+91 11 23471146
priyam.gupta@goethe.de

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