In Defence of Minimalism
The annual gala, the Mahakumbh of literature festivals- Zee Jaipur Literature festival kicked off yesterday, at Diggi Palace, Jaipur.Pico Iyer, in his seminal keynote address, ‘Charting a World Without Borders’, called it, ‘the most glamorous and romantic literature festivals in the world’. 

Tall in stature and in real life quite tall too- didn’t think so from the photos.

“We are trying to live at the speed of light, I don’t think the humans can live at a speed determined by machines without becoming machines themselves.” The nuanced, deep understanding of life that reflects in his writing and talks, shone through in his meditative reflection the questions of identity in the 21st century.
He waxed eloquent about how words and literature and not weapons are the saviour of the world. How deep and calm reflection and studied silences can help you as a writer. How a writer’s perspective is what makes the writing shine through. Stillness and movement are the warp and weft of quiet travel writing- yes theres such a thing! On cultural appropriation, he took an interesting turn on how ‘imagination is no respecter of boundaries’ How can a writer not imagine and try to live another culture? Of a minimalistic and simple, not simplistic outlook British born, Pico Iyer saw merit in cutting down fat from life, as it were, the extraneous and value depth over width in approach to writing! In his  session with Patrick French on The Art of stillness, he mentioned how stillness and quietude are essential to a writer’s  life and how he hasn’t used a phone! Also, please note that he chooses quality over quantity, and talking to a dear friend for 5 hours than emailing 50 friends! Depth, clarity and incisive thought are one’s best bet in tackling stress in a highly connected-disconnected world! 
Moneky on the Tanki!

Of Bones and Bodies- A thrilling talk!

What a brilliant session Amrita Tripathi had with Kathy Reichs. Conspiracy of Bones– Reichs next book formed the title of the session and charted the course of the author’s inspiration, her association with the TV series Bones and her Young Adults Books written with her children. During the course of the chat what caught Reichs attention was a Rhesus Macaque, yes the anthropologist didn’t lose a second in identifying it and admittedly geting distracted because of it, while the rest of us hung on to her word and clearly not perturbed by the monkeying around!
Other Highlights!

The ZEE Jaipur Literature  Festival 2018 as we know explores the symbiosis of literature and the performing arts, enriched by the flavours of theatre, music, dance, and performance poetry in its eclectic bouquet of sessions, this time around!
Another session that was marked with cheerful bonhomie and forthrightness was, The Real Thing, where Sir Tom Stoppard was in conversation with the theatre personality, Sanjna Kapoor. Stoppard, one of the greatest living playwrights who has written prolifically for the stage, TV and film, is the author of seminal works such as Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead, Travesties, Every Good Boy Deserves a Favor, Arcadia, Jumpers, The Real Thing and The Invention of Love. He is also the Oscar-winning screenwriter of Shakespeare in Love and The Russia House and recipient of as many as four Tony awards. Stoppard, who began his career as a journalist and a drama critic, has been a key playwright of the Royal National Theatre and one of the most internationally performed dramatists of his generation. He talked about the origin and the research of his latest book offering  5 plays anthology titled The Real Thing, of which one talks of his association and nostalgia for india- Indian Ink!

Blinded by the many literary lights at JLF!
So,hang on to this roller coasters sides as The Insider takes you around the festival that is more than just a jamboree of culture, books, readers and writers- it is a celebration of disparate factors and aspects of life co existing in celebratory form, and yes without daggers drawn! For more info check out JaipurLitFest website!
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