The Poetry of Solidarity event will focus on the outreach and dialogue mission of Matwaala by presenting projects and the festivals’ focus. Though the festival was created to increase the visibility of South Asian diasporic poets (not just India) it has expanded to facilitate solidarity with other writing groups from various communities and ethnicities. Depending on time, the program may include a poetry reading. The event will be held on October 5th 2023.
The organization has had mutlitple festivals in the past. You can view some of their recordings below.
To see more about their events click here.
The project is part of the subthemes Opportunity, Human and artificial creativity and Connect not divide.
Matwaala South Asian Diaspora Poetry Collective
Concerned about the visibility of South Asian poets in the American poetry scene, university reading series, and representation in anthologies and syllabi, we were inspired to initiate a collective. Though the core mission may be perceived as idealistic or even somber, Matwaala, materialized in a weirdly magical way in Austin. The idea of a poetry festival emerged after an editorial project we co-edited for www.museindia.com. The issue focused on a project involving Diaspora artists and poets that generated the idea for sustained collaboration and initiatives. A festival was its magnification, and appeared, erected on a shoestring budget propelled by enthusiasm and faith in 2015. The first festival/collective drew to its fold a group of poets, Saleem Peeradina, Pramila Venkateswaran, Ravi Shankar, Sasha Parmasad and Varshs Saraiya Shah. Joie de vivre, friendship and a sense of community have become the hallmark of the festival that seeks to establish a paradigm based not on hierarchies but on solidarity, offering readings by established and emerging poets, youth forums, papers and panel discussions.
In 2019 Matwaala launched its website, branding, and e-anthology, hosted readings in NYU, Hunter College and NCC. It received sponsorship from Poets & Writers and hosted South Asian diaspora poets from the UK.