David Harewood in conversation with Gary Younge

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This event took place on: 18 October 2021.

CW: This event contains discussion of mental illness and racial slurs.

Actor and writer David Harewood and Gary Younge discuss the themes of David’s new book Maybe I Don’t Belong Here, a deeply personal exploration of the duality of growing up both Black and British, and of recovery from crisis. This event stages a rallying cry to examine the systems and biases that continue to shape our society.

RSL 200 is the Royal Society of Literature’s bicentenary event series bringing together some of the world's best-known writers to explore the impact of literature on their lives. This event is available to the audiences and users of public libraries through the Living Knowledge Network.

You can purchase David Harewood's book 'Maybe I Don't Belong Here' from the British Library bookshop here, or borrow from your local library.

Speakers

Gary Younge

Writer and Broadcaster

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PEN Pinter Prize: Linton Kwesi Johnson

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This event took place on: 12 October 2020.

Linton Kwesi Johnson is presented with the 2020 PEN Pinter Prize.

The PEN Pinter Prize was established in 2009 by the charity English PEN, which defends freedom of expression and celebrates literature. In memory of Nobel-Laureate playwright Harold Pinter, the prize is awarded annually to a writer of outstanding literary merit resident in the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland or the Commonwealth who, in the words of Harold Pinter’s Nobel Prize in Literature speech, casts an ‘unflinching, unswerving’ gaze upon the world and shows a ‘fierce intellectual determination... to define the real truth of our lives and our societies’.

Linton Kwesi Johnson was chosen by this year’s judges; The Guardian’s Associate Editor for Culture Claire Armitstead; Dialogue Books Publisher Sharmaine Lovegrove, and author Max Porter. The judges said of Johnson: ‘Linton Kwesi Johnson is a poet, reggae icon, academic and campaigner, whose impact on the cultural landscape over the last half century has been colossal and multi-generational. His political ferocity and his tireless scrutiny of history are truly Pinteresque, as is the humour with which he pursues them.’

The prize will be shared with an International Writer of Courage: a writer who is active in defence of freedom of expression, often at great risk to their own safety and liberty, selected by Linton Kwesi Johnson from a shortlist of international cases supported by English PEN. The co-winner will be announced at the event, where they will accept their prize alongside Linton Kwesi Johnson.

This event is available to the audiences and users of public libraries through the Living Knowledge Network.

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