Writing the natural world is an important part of the novel genre since it gives a setting, a colour, a flavour, even a taste to the stories being told. Unsurprisingly, climate change is now being addressed as a theme relating to the natural world that can be found in many genres such as science fiction, fantasy, thriller, romance, and fiction.
Over the past 10 years, climate change has become a central theme in UK literature both for literary studies and in fiction. There is a burgeoning genre that has come to be known as “cli-fi”. Young adult and adult writers took the lead in the genre and have become rising stars in the UK and worldwide literature scene such as Yaba Badoe, David Barker, Lauren James, Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth Jane Burnett and Amy Liptrot.
The Climate Change writing residency with Amy Liptrot is an opportunity to open a dialogue about the role of literature in addressing climate change challenges and to explore concerns and experiences from UK and Algeria literature scenes. As a part of the stay at the amazing Dar Abdellatif residency. Amy Liptrot will meet Algerian scientific and literature professionals, students, journalists, writers, and publishers within a Master Class “Writing the Natural World” on 16 June, 16.00 -17.30 at Dar Abdellatif. She will also visit the Roman Ruins of Tipaza as she is interested in heritage sites that are at risk because of climate change. Last but not least, Amy Liptrot will be appearing in conversation with Mohamed Magani, an Algerian Novelist and Essayist whose latest novels encapsulate a frank orientation and concern with the ecological issue. They will talk about the world nature in their novels at Dar Abdellatif on 15 June 2022 (16:00-17:30). This is a public event that will be hosted by Dar Abdellatif aimed at Algerian literature lovers and other literature professionals.
The British Council initiative to organize a Climate Change writing residency with Amy Liptrot was welcomed and supported by the Algerian Agency for Cultural Fluency, and the Ministry of Culture and Arts, given the UK and Algerian literature and Arts scenes’ engagement in strengthening professional connections and exchanges and developing a common understanding of the world global challenges.
The British Council have been working with partners worldwide to provide a platform for global climate co-operation, dialogue and action to support the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26 ) in Glasgow, Scotland in November 2021.
The British Council’s Climate Connection programme brings people around the world together to meet the challenges of climate change. It’s about sharing ideas, developing innovative climate solutions, and taking positive action together. Drawing on our global network, the programme connects people from different countries, cultures, generations and backgrounds – young people and policy makers, artists and scientists, business and community leaders, and many others.
Amy Liptrot words:
The kind invitation from the British Council to visit Algeria came as a surprise to me. It is not a country I knew anything about or had considered visiting. However, I was honoured and intrigued by the prospect of the trip and the chance to learn about a new culture and place, in particular the environmental aspects proposed.
My work as a writer centre on the natural world and has a strong sense-of-place. I have written in particular about my home in the Orkney islands and its wildlife, weather, geography and geology, and my background as a farmer’s daughter. I am also concerned with - and have witnessed - the effects of climate change and species loss in the birdlife and sealife of the islands. I want to share about where I come from and my writing with Algerian artists, scientists and students and to hear about their experiences and surroundings. Although Orkney and Algiers are far apart, we are both coastal places and I’ll be listening for our shared challenges and ideas for the future.
As my younger son is only one year old, I did not feel able to leave him for the ten days or so duration of the trip. The British Council and the Algerian Agency for Cultural Fluency have generously and considerately made it possible for both of us to come. Instead of flying to Algiers, we are travelling more sustainably, by train and ferry. I intend to write about the journey by train and ferry with a toddler - a long journey which I hope will be pleasant and interesting. Amy Liptrot
Amy Liptrot Biography
The writer Amy Liptrot grew up on a sheep farm in the Orkney islands at the north of Scotland, UK. Her bestselling memoir, The Outrun, about her return to the islands while recovering from alcoholism, was published in 2016. It won the Wainwright Prize for nature writing and the PEN Ackerely Prize for memoir, has been translated into 16 languages and is being adapted into a feature film starring Saoirse Ronan. Her second book The Instant was published in 2022 and was another bestseller. She works as a journalist and literary critic and currently lives in Yorkshire, England with her family.
Amy Liptrot: In conversation with Mohamed Magani
Tuesday/ Wednesday 15 June at 16:00 – Dar Abdellatif
Bestselling, multi-award-winning author Amy Liptrot in conversation with the Algerian Novelist and essayist Mohamed Magani. They will talk about the nature of the world in their novels
Mohamed Magani Biography:
Novelist and Essayist, Mohamed Magani wrote16 books in French and a collection of short stories in English, His latest novels encapsulate a frank orientation and concern with the ecological issue, absent or loss of sight in contemporary Algerian literature. As well as his essays which attempt to highlight the multiple destructions of the environment, the environmental rights of citizens and the protection of the natural bases of existence.
Writing the Natural world Masterclass with Amy Liptrot
Thursday 16 June 2022 at Dar Abdellatif ( Translation available)