70th anniversary of the newspaper « Le Monde »

To celebrate its 70th anniversary, the eminent French newspaper Le Monde published 70 portraits of personalities expected to shape tomorrow’s world in their own respective ways in various areas, from economics and politics to arts and sports. Indian author Rana Dasgupta has been chosen to represent India’s culture.

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70th anniversary of the newspaper « Le Monde »

On this occasion, Rana Dasgupta and Florence Noiville were in conversation. Florence Noiville is a prolific author, she is also a journalist and a literary critic for Le Monde , as well as foreign fiction editor of the newspaper’s book section, “ Le Monde des Livres ”. This event was introduced by Frédéric Bobin, Le Monde’s South Asia correspondent, and took place in the presence of H.E. Mr François Richier, Ambassador of France to India on:

Monday, 26th May 2014 at 6.30 pm
at Oxford Bookstore
N-81 Connaught Place
New Delhi 110001

With more than 400 titles from the classic and contemporary French literature, as well as French translations of Indian writings, the French Corner of the Oxford Bookstore, launched last October, was a great platform for this discussion.

Florence Noiville was also our guest author for the 31st session of “Writers, etc.” and she talked about literature with Naveen Kishore, publisher at Seagull Books, who published Florence Noiville’s Literary Miniatures (2013) and The Attachment (to be published in 2015), on:

Wednesday, 28th May 2014 at 6.30 pm
at M.L. Bhartia Auditorium, Alliance Française de Delhi
72, Lodi Estate, New Delhi 110003

Before coming to India, Florence Noiville visited Bhutan, to participate in the Mountain Echoes Festival in Thimpu, marking the first ever French presence at this festival. She participated in two sessions:
-  L’Attachement , moderated by Judith Oriol (22 May at 4.55 pm, Taj Tashi)
-  Words and Worlds , moderated by Ashok Vajpeyi (24 May at 12.10 pm, Tarayana Centre)


Florence Noiville began her professional career in the financial sector, later becoming a journalist and literary critic for French newspaper Le Monde , where she has worked since 1994. She is now the Foreign Fiction Editor at the book section, Le Monde des livres . She received a Biography Award in 2004 for her biography of the Nobel Prize-winning American author Isaac Bashevis Singer. Her first novel La Donation was published in 2007 by Stock (and in English by Northwestern University Press under the title The Gift ) and her second novel L’Attachement (Stock) came out in 2012 and will be published in English in 2015 by Seagull Books. She is the author of a dozen books for children and her books have been translated into 14 languages. From 2007 to 2010, she hosted “Le Monde des Livres”, a literary show on the French television channel LCI.

Rana Dasgupta was born in Canterbury and studied at Balliol College, Oxford, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. After his studies he worked for an international marketing firm, which took him to London, Kuala Lumpur and then New York. In 2001, he moved to Delhi to write. Tokyo Cancelled , a cycle of contemporary folktales, appeared in 2005 and was shortlisted for the John Llewelyn Rhys Prize. Solo (2009) won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize. Capital: a Portrait of Twenty-First-Century Delhi appeared earlier this year. The Guardian called it an ‘intense, lyrical, erudite and powerful book… Dasgupta has provided a welcome corrective to the reams of superficial travel writing describing the whimsical, the exotic, the booming or simply the poverty-stricken in India. His is a much more complex, darker story.’

Oxford Bookstore’s French Corner, launched in October 2013, is the first of its kind in Delhi.
With more than 400 French titles, the French Books collection includes carefully handpicked works sourced from Librairie La Boucherie, a typical Parisian bookstore. The endeavour brings together on the shelves of Oxford Bookstore Connaught Place classic and contemporary French literature (fiction, non-fiction and children’s books), titles from the latest rentrée littéraire (the period in France during which publishing houses release hundreds of much anticipated books) as well as the French translations of some of the most celebrated works of Indian literature.

Frédéric Bobin has been since 2008 the South Asia correspondent for "Le Monde", based in New Delhi. He previously held the position of Deputy Head of the International News Section at the headquarters in Paris. He started his career as correspondent in the South Pacific (New-Caledonia, Australia) before joining the Political Section. He was later appointed correspondent in China, where he lived for six years (1998-2004). He is the author of Pékin en Mouvement (Autrement, 2006) and Voyage au centre de la Chine (Philippe Picquier, 2007).

Writers, Etc. is a cultural event jointly organised by the Book Office of the Institut Français en Inde and the Alliance Française de Delhi. This monthly rendezvous is a platform for literature, a space where the written word gets primacy, where literary ideas and their practitioners can genuinely interact with each other and the general public.

Naveen Kishore, photographer and lighting designer, is also publisher at Seagull Books.

Judith Oriol has a Ph.D in French Literature and is the author of an essay on women in Marcel Proust’s works. She was the head of the French Book Office in Bucharest at the French Embassy in Romania from 2004 to 2006 and from then until 2010, she worked in the Gallimard Publishers’ foreign rights department, where she was in charge of all the projects of translation into languages of Eastern European countries. She’s currently the Book Attachée at the French Embassy in India, having started her work there in September 2010.

Ashok Vajpeyi is a Hindi poet, critic, translator, editor, culture activist and a major cultural figure of India. With more than fourteen books of poetry, ten of criticism in Hindi and four books on art in English to his credit, he is widely recognised as an outstanding promoter of culture and an innovative institution-builder. Some of his latest books are Ibarat Se Giri Matrayen, Ummeed ka Doosra Naam, Vivaksha, Kavita ka Galp and Sidhiyan Shuru ho Gayi Hain .

Last modified on 29/05/2014

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