The debate is open

In other words, the freedom of expression conference, has just opened and we gather for a literary and musical demonstration of solidarity with the authors Asli Erdoğan, from Turkey, Narges Mohammadi, from Iran and Khadija Ismailova from Azerbaijan. The three authors were invited to Lillehammer by PEN International, ICORN, Norwegian PEN and the Norwegian Festival of Literature, but a festival visit remains an impossible dream because each of them is either in prison, under house arrest or not permitted to leave the country because they expressed their convictions.

The evening’s host is the Icelandic author and PEN member Sjón.

Fellow Authors who will take part are: Gunvald Axner Ims (Norway), Asieh Amini (Iran), Mohammadi Hamidreza(Iran), Anzhelina Polonskaya (Russia), Ali Kalaei (Syria), Birger Emanuelsen (Norway), Gunel Movlud (Azerbaijan), Housam Al-Mosilli (Syria), Basim Mardan (Iraq), and Brit Bildøen (Norway).

Musical interlude by Khaled Harara (Palestine).

When:Wednesday 31. May at 22:00
Where:Teltet på Stortorget
Info:In collaboration with ICORN. PEN International and Norwegian PEN
Info:Readings in the authors’ respective working languages
Info:The event will be in English



Sjón, who’s real name is Sigurjón Birgir Sigurðsson, lives in Island. Since his debut as a teenager he has recieved several national and international awards for his authorship, amongst them the Nordic Council’s Literary Prize for his novel The Blue Fox (the nordic countries’ equivalent of the Man Booker Prize). The novel From The Mouth Of The Whale was shortlisted for both the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize. He has written lyrics for Björk More >

Asieh Amini

Asieh Amini is a poet, journalist and women’s rights activist from Iran. She has been a leading campaigner against the death penalty in her homeland. Between 2010 and 2012 she was the guest writer in Trondheim City of Refuge.  Today she lives in New York. More >

Anzhelina Polonskaya

Anzhelina Polonskaya is a Russian poet. Since her debut in 1983 she has been translated into numerous European languages. Following threats from Russian nationalists in response to her libretto Kursk, in 2015, she now lives in Frankfurt. More >

Birger Emanuelsen

Birger Emanuelsen is one of Norway’s key young prose writers. With his three books he has positioned himself as an important voice within the tradition of ‘realism’. More >

Gunel Movlud

Gunel Movlud is a journalist, poet and translator from Azerbaijan. For the last three years she has lived in exile in Germany and Georgia, she now lives in Norway. More >

Housam Al-Mosilli

Housam Al-Mosilli is a Syrian writer, journalist, translator and scientist.  He lived in Damaskus until forced to flee in 2012.  Today, Al-Mosilli lives in Istanbul. More >

Basim Mardan

Basim Mardan is an author, playwright and translator from Irak. From 2006 til 2008 he lived in Skien, Norway, Since 2016 he has settled in London.

  More >

Brit Bildøen

Brit Bildøen is a Norwegian novelist and poet from Aukra.  Educated and employed as a librarian, she has also studied sociology and attended the Skrivekunstakademiet in Hordaland, Norway. More >

Ali Kalaei

Ali Kalaei is a journalist, blogger and human rights activist from Iran. More >

This post is also available in: Norwegian Bokmål