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28 September 2018  -  28 September 2018

On Refuge

country to call home

Waterstones, Gower Street, London

Lucy Popescu, editor of A Country to Call Home, presents an evening of readings and discussion on the subject of refuge with Marina Lewycka, Kim Sherwood, Daniel Trilling and Ellen Wiles.

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Marina Lewycka, author A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian, was born in 1946 in a refugee camp in Kiel, Germany. When she was a year old, the family moved to Yorkshire, where she grew up. Marina has contributed to The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives, a collection of original essays by various prominent refugee writers, edited by Pulitzer Prize winner Viet Thanh Ngyen.

Lucy Popescu is a writer and editor with a background in human rights. She is a former director of English PEN’s Writers in Prison Committee and co-edited the PEN anthology Another Sky. She is also the author of The Good Tourist, about human rights and ethical travel, and edited the anthologies A Country to Call Home and A Country of Refuge about the experiences of refugees and asylum seekers. She is a volunteer mentor with Write to Life, Freedom from Torture’s refugee writing group.

Kim Sherwood’s stories and articles have appeared in Mslexia, Lighthouse, and Going Down Swinging. Kim began her debut novel, Testament, after her grandfather, the actor George Baker, passed away. At the same time, Kim’s grandmother began to talk about her experiences as a Holocaust survivor. Their experiences were the inspiration for a story that grew as Kim undertook research into the events of the Holocaust in Hungary, and as extremism rose again across Europe.

Daniel Trilling is the editor of New Humanist magazine and has reported extensively on refugees in Europe. His work has been published in the London Review of Books, The Guardian and the New York Times and won a 2017 Migration Media Award. His first book, Bloody Nasty People: the Rise of Britain’s Far Right, was longlisted for the 2013 Orwell Prize. Lights in the Distance is a compelling collection of stories about people he has encountered travelling towards Europe in search of safety or a better life.

Ellen Wiles is a novelist, literary anthropologist and live literature curator. Ellen’s debut novel, The Invisible Crowd, is about an asylum seeker’s experiences in the UK, serendipitous encounters and the power of kindness. It was inspired by a case Ellen worked on as a barrister, and her voluntary work with refugees.