Festival America, held every other year in Vincennes, to the east of Paris, will be taking place between 22 and 25 September. It brings together over sixty writers not only from the United States, but also from Canada, Quebec, Mexico, Cuba and Haiti, in a bid to acquaint the French public with North American literature and culture. The festival was first organized in 2002 and has since become one of the highlights of the French literary calendar — around 45,000 people are expected to attend this year.
This year’s edition will bring together 63 guests, including Jonathan Franzen, Louise Erdrich, Richard Ford, Russell Banks, Joyce Maynard, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Emma Cline, Natasha Trethewey, Julie Otsuka, Viet Thanh Nguyen, Jake Lamar (who was at the Book Room to talk about his latest novel, Viper’s Dream, just last spring. You can read an interview with him here ) and many others, around the theme ‘Voix d’Amérique’ (Voices of America): voices of writers who speak about past trauma and an uncertain future; voices of men and women who challenge the status quo and who imagine a better future.
There will be around a hundred events, debates and discussion panels with authors on topics such as history, writing and American society, as well as photo exhibitions, film projections, street art, and many events and meet-ups aimed at younger festival-goers . The festival will also be honoring the native people of the Americas and has invited over twenty writers from indigenous communities in Canada and the United States, who will talk about the struggle to maintain their cultural identity while adapting to an everchanging world. More info: festival-american.com.
If you miss the Festival you can stop by Bill & Rosa’s Book Room where you’ll find lots of books by these same authors and some upcoming author events too.