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  • Talma Gotteiner

The Jerusalem International Writers Festival 2021

Hi there,

The 9th Jerusalem International Writers Festival at Mishkenot Sha'ananim, Jerusalem will take place this year with a multitude of digital events and encounters that feature international and local writers. In addition, there will be in-person events at Mishkenot Sha'ananim and throughout Jerusalem, including literature and music performances, picnics, tours, workshops, exhibitions, and more.

The festival organizers are proud to tell you that this year, the Jerusalem Writers Festival has joined Word Alliance, an organization that brings together the most important and interesting literature festivals in the world today and creates an extensive network of different communities in the global literature scene.

Festivals Directors: Moti Schwartz and Dr. Polina Shtemler

Artistic Director: Author Liran Golod

WHEN: May 3-6, 2021

The Jerusalem International Writers Festival 2021
Credit: Jonathan Safran Foer © Jeff Mermelstein

The international writers taking part this year are Salman Rushdie (UK/US), Jonathan Safran Foer (US), Vanessa Springora (France), Harlan Coben (US), Anvni Doshi (US/Dubai) , Emmanuel Moses (France), Domenico Starnone (Italy), and Linn Ullmann (Norway).

They will hold unconventional meetings alongside events with Israeli writers, including David Grossman, Zeruya Shalev, Meir Shalev, Etgar Keret, Eshkol Nevo, Julia Fermento, Iris Eliya-Cohen, Yonatan Sagiv, Michal Govrin, Dror Mishani, and Dorit Shiloh, musicians Ehud Banai, Asaf Avidan, Efrat Ben-Zur, and Shuli Rand, other artists from various fields, and cultural and media figures.


Among the Writers Festival events that will take place at Mishkenot Sha'ananim and throughout Jerusalem this year are the following:

  • Cautious Optimism: Etgar Keret and Shuli Rand will meet onstage for the first time in an open-air literary-musical performance.

  • It Runs in the Family: Cousins Meir Shalev and Zeruya Shalev will meet onstage for the first time for a conversation on life a literary family.

  • Outdoor Literary Picnics: A Coffee Picnic with culture expert Itay Mautner, poet Ronny Somek, coffee sociologist Noa Berger, and Mahmoud Muna, owner of the Educational Bookshop in East Jerusalem; A Picnic of Kisses with author and editor Noa Menhaim, clinical psychologist Dan Friedlander, journalist and culture critic Niv Hadas, and actress and singer Efrat Ben-Zur; and a Little Black Dress Picnic with fashion historian Yaara Keydar, author and editor Yaara Shehori, and content expert Eyal de Leeuw.

  • Literary tours in Jerusalem led by writer and filmmaker Yair Agmon with director Moran Ifergan, author Shifra Cornfeld, and poet and filmmaker Amichai Chasson and tours led by Yiftach Ashkenazi, Emmanuel Moses, and Michal Govrin.

  • Unique Workshops: A free movement lesson with poet Agi Mishol and dancer and choreographer Maya Yogel, a writing workshop with author and journalist Marcel Moseri, and a podcast workshop with Maya Kosover following the original podcast project she created especially for the Writers Festival .

  • Story Time for the Whole Family with the children's magazine Einayim: “A Lion at the Windmill” with author Shoham Smith.

  • Opening of the Exhibition Breathing at the Dwek Gallery at Mishkenot Sha’ananim, which will display works by Israeli women artists in the spirit of the times (Curator: Ronit Reik).

  • As part of the digital events at the Writers Festival and in collaboration with the Department of Jewelry and Fashion at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, a digital exhibition created by students with the inspiration of literary figures, led by Sarai Shavit, Sheikha Haliva, Yaara Shehori, and Etgar Keret.

  • A panel entitled "Publishing during a Pandemic" in collaboration with the Jerusalem International Book Forum and featuring Madeline McIntosh, CEO of Penguin Random House, USA; Gray Tan, founder and president of the Grayhawk Agency, Taiwan; Michael Cader, founder of Publisher’s Marketplace, USA; and author Yaniv Iczkovits.

Moti Schwartz, Director General of Mishkenot Sha'ananim: "The Jerusalem Writers Festival will be held this year in the spirit of the times and combines digital encounters with guests from abroad and in-person events at Mishkenot Sha'ananim, one of the most unique and enchanting places in the country. The experiences and challenges of the past year have reinforced the need to continue to initiate and hold at all times and in any suitable format all of Mishkenot Sha'ananim’s cultural events, led by the International Writers Festival. I am happy and proud to offer the Israeli public an excellent and surprising artistic program. The new books by the international authors are being published in Hebrew ahead of the Writers Festival and the audience will have a wonderful opportunity to become acquainted with a fascinating variety of voices from the best writers from Israel and the world."

The Writers Festival is held with the support of the Jerusalem Foundation, the Jerusalem Municipality, the Ministry of Culture and Sport, the Beracha Foundation, the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature, and others.

The Mishkenot Sha'ananim Cultural Center meets the Green Pass requirements for cultural events according to the Ministry of Health guidelines.


The full progam, registration, and ticket purchase is available on the festival's website.



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Disclaimer: All marketing affiliations have been cancelled. Articles prior to March 2021 may contain links that were once affiliate links, but are now regular links.


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