Renowned author Amitav Ghosh headlines SFU Vancouver Speaker series

July 04, 2019

Simon Fraser University and Indian Summer Festival will host renowned author Amitav Ghosh for the SFU Vancouver 30th Anniversary Speaker Series on Tuesday, July 9 at the Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema at SFU’s Goldcorp Centre for the Arts.

Ghosh will speak on his latest book, The Great Derangement, which speculates on how future generations will reflect on contemporary society’s failure to address climate change.

“Among the many awards Amitav Ghosh has won is the Grinzane Cavour Prize for a life dedicated to literature,” says Sirish Rao, co-founder of the Indian Summer Festival.

“It is popularly held that anyone who wins this prize goes on to the win the Nobel Prize for Literature (think Nadine Gordimer, JM Coetzee, Wole Soyinka, Jose Saramago, Orhan Pamuk, Gunter Grass, Doris Lessing and VS Naipaul and a pattern starts to emerge),” says Rao. “Could there be a Nobel in the horizon for Ghosh? Come meet a giant of world literature right here in Vancouver at this special event.”

Presented by SFU’s Vancouver campus, SFU Public Square and SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement, the event will be moderated by Am Johal, executive director of SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement.  

This event is part of SFU Vancouver Campus’ 30th anniversary and the Indian Summer Festival, which runs from July 4 – 14. Tickets are available from the Indian Summer Festival website.

Ghosh holds two Lifetime Achievement awards and four honorary doctorates. In 2019, Foreign Policy magazine named him one of the most important global thinkers of the preceding decade. A year earlier, he was recognized with the Jnanpith Award, India’s highest literary honor—the first English-language writer to receive the award.

Ghosh was awarded the Grand Prix of the Blue Metropolis festival in Montreal in 2011, and in 2010, was a joint winner, along with Margaret Atwood, of a Dan David prize. In 2007, he was awarded the Padma Shri, one of India's highest honors, by India’s president.

Launched in 2012, SFU’s Vancouver Speaker Series builds on SFU’s rich history of community engagement, by exploring critical issues that contribute to better understanding among Vancouver’s citizens through an intellectually enriching experience.

This story originally appeared in SFU News.