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3 Festivals for 2024


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September 2021: Currently Reading

By - 30 September 2021 - 23:00pm

Each month we will share what the DBF team are currently reading. We'd love to hear your thoughts via our social media channels.

This is our second instalment of ‘Currently Reading’ and we are delighted to share what we’ve been reading this month. With it getting dark earlier and Autumn fast approaching, we’re looking forward to spending more time getting cosy and enjoying a good book.

Gini, Festival Manager: Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney

Having read and loved Sally Rooney’s Conversations with Friends and Normal People, I was eagerly awaiting the publication of her latest novel Beautiful World but not without a degree of apprehension about whether she could ‘deliver’ again. Tackling the themes of relationships, families, fame and self-worth, Beautiful World explores the lives of 4 somewhat disenfranchised protagonists through their eyes, their commentary and email exchanges. Their apparent inability to connect easily with others or communicate emotions to one another face to face, relying on social media and messaging instead, and their observations about the state of the world and their own lives is, perhaps, a reflection of the digital age in which we live. In part due to the writing style, it took a while to warm to the characters and their quirks but, in the end, I was on their side.

Jo, Shared Reading Co-Ordinator: Everything is Going to be All Right: Poems for When You Really Need Them edited by Cecilia Knapp.

It’s a wonderful collection of poems all touching on some element of the human condition but ultimately celebrating the similarities between us and the things which ‘touch’ us to make us aware that we’re not alone and comfort and beauty can be found in many things and actions. I’d recommend it to anyone questioning whether there are more bad than good people in the world (there aren’t!!) and anyone feeling adrift – these poems will give you something to hold on to.

Felicity, Festival Administrator: Invisible Women by Caroline Criado Perez

Invisible Women: Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men is a difficult read. It highlights just how deep the gender divide runs throughout society and the world in general. The case studies highlighted are considered and backed up by research and show the extent to which women are overlooked or even erased from history. Whether it’s the way a town or city is planned to cater to the predominantly early morning male commuters, or the fact that the works of successful women have been erased from history. It’s an important book to read, but it is hard. The really shocking thing is perhaps how accustomed we have all become to living life on male terms and the fact that change, if it happens, moves at a glacial pace.

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