Program Category: Main Program

From intimate in-conversations between leading authors, artists, thinkers and performers, to fiery debates on some of the world’s most pressing issues, the Festival’s Main Program takes place from 25–28 October.

Spanning 70 sessions over four days, the program is held across three venues: Festival Hub @ Taman Baca, Indus Restaurant and NEKA Museum, which are all within walking distance of each other on Jl. Raya Sanggingan. A free shuttle service runs between each venue and Puri Lukisan Museum in Ubud central every 30 minutes, from 8:00am to 6:00pm.


Main Program: Fantastical Realms

26 Oct 2018 10:15 /

From a man begging forgiveness from a tree, to a woman engaging in intense conversation with a snake in Eden, every poem is a realm of its own. Poetry’s precise …

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Main Program: Public Opinions

26 Oct 2018 10:15 /

Life in the public eye can be particularly perilous in the internet age, as access and anonymity conspire to bring out the worst in many. For these writers though, retreat …

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Main Program: Worth a Thousand Words

26 Oct 2018 11:45 /

This year a graphic novel was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize for the first time. From ethereal children’s books to striking covers of new and classic novels, images can …

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Main Program: Kamila Andini: The Seen and Unseen

26 Oct 2018 11:45 /

Award-winning Indonesian director Kamila Andini’s debut feature, The Mirror Never Lies, follows the lives of Bajo ‘sea gypsies’ in South Sulawesi. Her second feature, Sekala Niskala (The Seen and Unseen), …

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Main Program: Hanif Kureishi: The Nothing

26 Oct 2018 11:45 /

Hanif Kureishi has been a major and vital presence on page, stage and screen since 1990’s The Buddha of Suburbia. In The Nothing, readers will recognize his distinctive take on …

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Main Program: The Big Read: Journeys

26 Oct 2018 13:00 /

It’s one of life’s pleasures: having someone read to you. Let your imagination wander with some of UWRF’s finest storytellers as they share tales of adventure, stories of discovery and …

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Main Program: #metoo

26 Oct 2018 13:00 /

#metoo. It’s the hashtag that has become a lightning rod for movements around the world, taking on different meanings in different places. We convene a round table conversation with writers …

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Main Program: Off Limits

26 Oct 2018 13:00 /

Many topics are still taboo in Indonesia, and the consequences of tackling them are very real. Meet some of the country’s most courageous young writers as they narrate the prejudices …

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Main Program: The Foreign Correspondents’ Club

26 Oct 2018 14:30 /

Whether reporting from exotic locales or the world’s trouble spots, telling stories of tragedy or triumph, the work of a foreign correspondent is never dull. We’ve managed to pin down …

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Main Program: Cosmopolitan Creativity

26 Oct 2018 14:30 /

How does leaving home influence the writer’s mind? Whether a short sojourn or a new life in a new location, expanded horizons tend to find their way on to the …

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Main Program: Rewriting the Script

26 Oct 2018 14:30 /

In Indonesia, no female-directed film has entered the annual top five highest-grossing domestic films list since 2011, and female roles still tend to be confined to feminine stereotypes. Meet the …

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Main Program: Evolving Islam

26 Oct 2018 15:45 /

No religion has received as many headlines or as much misunderstanding in recent years as Islam. Our panelists study the faith in its many manifestations, from everyday lives in Indonesia …

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Main Program: In Praise of Slow

26 Oct 2018 15:45 /

Faster! Better! More! Productivity and personal achievement are dominant cultural values in 2018, but do we have to buy in? Our panel asks you to put down your phone, put …

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Main Program: Biographical Boundaries

26 Oct 2018 15:45 /

The best biographers have an eye for real life stories with something timeless to tell. From research to revelation, our panel unpacks the art of writing real lives: when do …

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Main Program: Gillian Triggs: Speaking Up

27 Oct 2018 09:00 /

Gillian Triggs became a household name as President of Australia’s Human Rights Commission, advocating for the disempowered, the disenfranchised, the marginalized. Reflecting on her life and career, she shares the …

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Main Program: The Pledge

27 Oct 2018 09:00 /

Long before it was known as Indonesia, youth across the archipelago converged on present-day Jakarta and made the bold pledge to unite as one nation with one language: Bahasa. 90 …

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Main Program: Giuseppe Catozzella: Don’t Tell Me You’re Afraid

27 Oct 2018 09:00 /

Giuseppe Catozzella’s Don’t Tell Me You’re Afraid sold more than half a million copies in 40 countries and won Italy’s prestigious Premio Strega Giovani Prize. One of the most popular …

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Main Program: Local Wisdom

27 Oct 2018 10:15 /

Colonial legacies and encroaching commercial forces threaten Indigenous cultures across the Asia-Pacific. Four champions of culture will tell us about their work preserving traditional languages, stories and knowledge and empowering …

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Main Program: Intimate Instincts

27 Oct 2018 10:15 /

Sometimes the smallest details tell us the most. In their moving and memorable books, these writers draw on intimate interactions of ordinary families in extraordinary circumstances. They share the craft …

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Main Program: Yenny Wahid: Against All Odds

27 Oct 2018 10:15 /

Yenny Wahid has watched Indonesia from different vantage points; as a journalist covering Aceh and Timor-Leste, and as confidante of a president besieged by political intrigue. Now, as Director of …

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