How to write a politically radical debut novel (and win awards): a conversation with Preti Taneja
We That Are Young is Preti Taneja’s prize-winning debut novel. A radical retelling of Shakespeare's King Lear set in modern-day India, it is a fierce, poetic exposé of misogyny, political corruption, social inequality and elite power and explores the (im)possibilities of movement across bounded spaces and categories of identity.
Preti is a Fellow Commoner of Jesus College as well as a Leverhulme Fellow at the University of Warwick and the recipient of the 2018 Desmond Elliott Prize, the UK's most prestigious award for first-time novelists. We That Are Young was also nominated for one of Europe’s most important literary awards, the Prix Jan Michalski, and for India's Shakti Bhatt First Book Prize. It was a Guardian, Sunday Times and Specatator Book of the Year and has been published in new editions in India and the USA and sold in five other territories to date. It has been called “spellbinding” (Mark Haddon), “dazzling” (Boston Globe), “a masterpiece … uncompromising, fierce and emotionally vast” (Omar El Akkad), “a new, chilling take on one of the oldest stories in the world” (New York Times), “a work of epic scope and depth that’s bracingly of the current moment” (Publishers Weekly), “exquisite” (The Sunday Times), “a chilling warning” (The Irish Times).
Come and join us to hear Preti discuss her work, in conversation with Leila Essa from King’s College London, and Jesus College Fellow Sarah Colvin.
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