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Elif Şafak is this year’s Bjørnson lecturer

Elif Şafak (photo: Ebru Bilun)

This year’s Bjørnson lecturer is the Turkish author Elif Şafak (photo: Ebru Bilun)

The Turkish author Elif Şafak will be coming to INN University’s Lillehammer campus on June 1st, to hold this year's Bjørnson lecture as part of the Norwegian Festival of Literature

Şafak’s lecture is titled “The Role of Literature in a Changing World”

About Elif Şafak

Elif Şafak is Turkey's most read author with 15 releases to her name. For her best-selling novel, "The Bastard of Istanbul" (2006), she was sued for " insulting Turkishness", but the charges were later dropped.

She has an international background and nowadays resides in both London and Istanbul, where she writes for the Turkish newspaper Haberturk, as well as for major international newspapers.

She has, with her commitment to the oppressed, marked herself as a sharp political commentator and speaker. Her books have been translated into more than 30 languages, with "The Forty Rules of Love" (2017) being the latest translation to Norwegian.

Elif Şafak has received a number of awards and has been awarded the honorary title Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters. She follows Margaret Atwood as the fourth author of the Future Library, in which notable works are archived and set to be reopened in the year 2114.

About the Bjørnson lecture

The Bjørnson lecture is annually given by outstanding authors, who are engaged in social issues both nationally and internationally.

Issues related to the fight for freedom of expression, human rights and democracy are of particular interest.

The event was held for the first time on 31st May 2007 as part of the Norwegian Festival of Literature – Sigrid Undset days.

The lecture takes place at INN University’s Lillehammer campus – Bjørnstjerne Bjørnsons auditorium (auditorium A) – and is a part of the social dissemination vision of the institution.

The Bjørnson lecture is a cooperation between INN University, The Norwegian Festival of Literature, Nansen Academy and Maihaugen. The initiative is also supported by Lillehammer municipality, Gausdal municipality and Fritt Ord.  

The Bjørnson discussion

After the lecture at INN University, a Bjørnson discussion is to be held, in which Elif Şafak and literary scholar and gender researcher Jørgen Lorentzen will talk about the topics of literature, politics, religion, human rights and freedom of expression: "How can one book or one human stand up to the superpower?". The Bjørnson discussion will take place at 13:00-14:15 at Nansen Academy.