ORGANISERS of the annual international literature festival, LitFest Harare said this year’s edition would celebrate the resilience of artistes during the COVID-19 pandemic.

BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO

The festival, which will run from November 25 to 28 under the theme, Art Longa, Vita Brevis — Art is Long, Life is Short will be partially streamed online.

“The onset of the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns saw many arts and culture practitioners losing revenue streams, sources of livelihood or even loved ones,” Festival director Chirikure Chirikure told NewsDay Life & Style.

“Through all this, most artistes showed great resilience and continued to move forward, adapting and daring to keep creating works of artistic expression. We have to salute that resilience,” he said

Chirikure said the COVID-19 pandemic had a lot of ripple effects in households and societies around the globe.

“In particular, gender-based violence cases reportedly increased since the COVID-19-induced lockdown and as such, the festival will focus on issues related to violence and peace transformation,” he said.

“Art, and literature in particular, have to contribute to the dialogue around social challenges and their effect. The ability to stay firm under difficult conditions and to interrogate such challenges, are the stamina that keep us going.”

Chirikure said the passion and purpose to create works was noble because art would live forever, and help shape the future.

“The LitFest Harare festival will feature discussions, readings, recitations and performances by various local and international participants. Details of sessions and participants will be announced in due course,” he said.

The LitFest Harare festival celebrates literature, arts and culture by bringing together authors, artists, academics, students and the public to share knowledge, collaborate, as well as showcase and enjoy talent.

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