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New Colombian writing: Pilar Quintana and Velia Vidal

June 1, 2023 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm UTC+0

If you thought Colombian literature began and ended with magical realism, get ready to think again.

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This event takes place at the British Library.

Fresh from Colombia and a year of creating a new anthology of Colombia women writers, Pilar Quintana is here to present her latest novel, Abyss, translated by Lisa Dillman. One of Colombia’s most exciting literary voices, Pilar’s work been translated into over 20 languages. Her first novel, The Bitch, was a finalist for the US National Book Prize and received a PEN Translates award. This is her only London event so catch her while you can! Pilar is joined (remotely) by fellow Colombian author Velia Vidal, to shine a light onto new literary landscapes in Colombia, and beyond. Velia is listed as one of the BBC’s 100 Women for her work promoting reading.

Pilar Quintana and Velia Vidal are in conversation with Bee Rowlatt.

This is an English-language event, introduced by Polly Russell, Head of the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library.

Pilar Quintana is a widely respected Colombian writer, selected by Hay Festival as one of the most promising young authors of Latin America. Her previous novel, The Bitch, won a PEN Translates award. It also won the prestigious Colombian Biblioteca de Narrativa Prize, was chosen to preserve for future generations in a marble time capsule in Bogotá. Abyss, her latest novel, was awarded the Premio Alfaguara de Novela, which is among the most prestigious awards in the Spanish language.

Velia Vidal is an author and promoter of culture from Colombia’s El Chocó region, who sees story-telling as a tool to fight inequality in one of Colombia’s most deprived regions. Her recent book, Aguas de Estuario, was the first winner of a publication grant for Afro-Colombian authors from the Colombian Ministry of Culture. She is a researcher for the Afluentes project, a joint initiative with the British Museum and is featured in Untold Microcosms (2022) from Charco Press.

Bee Rowlatt is a writer and public speaker, and a producer of events at the British Library. A former journalist for BBC Mundo, she has a research background in Latin America, and has lived and worked in Colombia.

Half price tickets available for Members, Students, Under 26s and other concession groups.

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This event will not be live-streamed.

This event is supported by the Colombian Embassy and the Eccles Centre for American Studies:

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June 1, 2023
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm UTC+0


The British Library
96 Euston Road
London, NW1 2DB United Kingdom
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