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The Online Hay Festival

By Nidhi Gupta

A source of joy for me during the lock down has been various online forums, which have put up absolutely fabulous content. One such was the Hay Festival in the UK, Hay-on-Wye going online.

I especially enjoyed their session on Wordsworth, where some stalwarts from Oscar winners to Nobel laureates recited from Wordsworth’s poetry and read from his sister Dorothy Wordsworth’s journal. I enjoyed it all the more because I have been to their cottage in Grasmere, the village in the Lake District of England, where they both lived and worked. I am inclosing a picture of the event, and two of the mugs that I bought at the cottage in Grasmere.


It's amazing to know that the Hay Festival of Literature and Arts that takes place annually didn't let the pandemic get in the way of its purpose, of being "The Woodstock of the Mind" (as described by Bill Clinton). While the virtual event ended on the 31st of May 2020, the official website of the Festival is still definitely worth checking out for literary entertainment if you're stuck at home–

One can still listen to the speakers of the Hay Festival 2020, including but not limited to Benedict Cumberbatch, Margaret Atwood, and Stephen Fry. Their 'World of Ideas' truly seems interesting. The website also has a podcast to offer; free films for school children; a free film each week; and a monthly book suggestion. This month's book recommendation is 'Hamnet' by Maggie O'Farrell.

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