HEARTLAND STORIES encourages the narration of individual as well as collective stories so as to unlock those hidden human emotions that are intrinsic to all of us and which bind our spirits together. This togetherness is the powerful force that can be evoked to transform the lone individual into the powerful collective. This is where words written would find voice, silence would find expression and darkness would be illuminated - so as to touch and kindle the soul of every individual, every collective, every society. Heartland Stories are those stories that stimulate the intellect and provoke detailed discussion and candid dialogue.
Inspired by the glorious traditions and rich history of Central India - stories from the UNESCO World Heritage sites of Sanchi (close to the Heliodorus Pillar and the Udaygiri Caves) and Bhimbhedka, the enticing and mysterious jungles of Central India, the upsurge of traditional and contemporary arts: epics writers like Kalidas; literary giants like Makhanlal Chaturvedi, Hari Shankar Parsai and Subhadra Kumari Chauhan; artists like SH Raza, MF Husain and NS Bendre; musicians like Tansen, Ustad Allauddin Khan and Kumar Gandharv - and the common desire to foster an environment of culture, the Society for Culture and Environment has planned an annual event: The Bhopal Literature and Art Festival.
Bhopal is the city of Raja Bhoja, the Gond Rani Kamlapati and the Nawab Begums of Bhopal. It has seen the rise of Emperor Ashoka and Chandragupta Vikramaditya. Dotted with gardens, its historic palaces and their floral interiors provide rare insights into the aesthetic and cultural finesse of those times. The unfolding of history is reflected in its diverse architecture, its beautiful lakes and its serene multicultural ethos.
Partnered by Sahitya Akademi, the national literature organization, the Society for CUlture and Environment has carefully crafted this five-day online extravaganza.
SAHITYA AKADEMI, India's National Academy of letters, is the central institution for literary dialogue, publication and promotion and the only institution that undertakes literary activities in 24 Indian languages, including English. Over the 64 years of its dynamic existence, it has ceaselessly endeavored to promote healthy reading habits, to keep alive the intimate dialogue among the various linguistic and literary zones and groups through seminars, lectures, symposia, discussions, readings and performances.