The fourth annual DISQUIET International Literary Program will be held in Lisbon in 2014. Run by a group of North American writers with ties to Portugal, the program aims to deepen mutual understanding among writers from North America and writers from Portugal. The program takes its inspiration from The Book of Disquiet, the great Lisbon poet Fernando Pessoa’s masterpiece; from the city of Lisbon itself; and from the late Portuguese poet Alberto de Lacerda, who believed above all in the importance of literary community.
The work of Pessoa and the geography of the city of Lisbon are inseparable. As one wanders the labyrinthine cobblestone alleys of Lisbon’s centuries-old Alfama district, never knowing where the next bend leads, one wanders the pages of Portugal’s greatest writer’s greatest work. Lisbon, the center of an empire that once ruled the world and is now often overlooked there on the westernmost edge of continental Europe, has a strong literary and cultural history and a thriving young literary and cultural scene despite the economic crises and austerity measures of recent years. It’s one of the most beautiful of the European capitals with fairy tale castles, gothic cathedrals, and world-class beaches. And while it can be hot in the summer, you should see the light as the sun sets from one of the city’s many lookout points. It’s the perfect place to be inspired, to become disquieted, to do some good work, and to build a literary community with other readers and writers.
DISQUIET is a project of US-based Dzanc Books and the Portuguese Centro Nacional de Cultura with support from the Luso-American Development Foundation and many other organizations that make it possible for DISQUIET to offer, if we don’t say so ourselves, an incomparably immersive experience in literary and cultural Lisbon.
We hope you’ll consider joining us and many of the most interesting and important contemporary writers from North America and Portugal and from around the world in Lisbon this summer.
Jeff Parker, Co-Founder & Director
Scott Laughlin, Co-Founder & Associate Director