The Right Livelihood Award and the Medellín Poetry Festival hold joint anniversary celebration

Press releases 14.08.2020

The Right Livelihood Award and the Medellín International Poetry Festival are joining forces to celebrate milestones: the Award is commemorating the 40th anniversary of its founding, while the famous Colombian poetry festival is marking 30 years since its establishment.

In a virtual celebration, Right Livelihood Laureates will join artists and other speakers to discuss relevant topics, including the role of disarmament in achieving world peace, how to best defend life on Earth and the importance of culture in transforming human societies.

Right Livelihood Laureates, such as anti-nuclear activist Alyn Ware; public intellectuals, such as Boaventura de Sousa Santos of Portugal; and artists, including Gcina Mhlophe of South Africa, will discuss these topics in three webinars.

The events are part of the programme of the current edition of the poetry festival, which runs from August 1 to October 10 with 200 guests participating from more than 100 countries.

The Poetry Festival and the joint celebration with the Right Livelihood Award had to be moved entirely online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This will be the largest virtual meeting of poets in the history of culture. It is of even greater significance that such a vigorous presence of poets comes in a time of large-scale human confinement. It will break the isolation and forced silence of the people,” said Fernando Rendón, Director and Co-founder of the Festival.

The Medellín International Poetry Festival was born in 1991 with the purpose of overcoming the fear and political hatred prevailing in Colombia at that time.

In 2006, the Medellín International Poetry Festival received the Right Livelihood Award “for showing how creativity, beauty, free expression and community can flourish amongst and overcome even deeply entrenched fear and violence.”



All webinars will be streamed online on Facebook @festivalpoesiamed and on YouTube: revistaprometeo

World Peace and Disarmament

Tuesday, August 18
10:45 Colombian time/15:45 GMT/17:45 CET
Language: English

Brief greeting:
Mr. Ole von Uexkull (Sweden)
Mr. Fernando Rendón (Colombia)

Ms. Ulrika Modeer (Sweden)
Mr. Alyn Ware (New Zealand)
Ms. Gcina Mhlophe (South Africa)

Song by Ms. Gcina Mhlophe

Moderator: Mr. Ole von Uexkull, Right Livelihood Foundation

Defence of Earth and Life

Monday, August 24
10:00 Colombian time/15:00 GMT/17:00 CET
Language: Spanish

Ms. Fiore Longo (France), member of 1989 Laureate Survival International
Ms. Francia Márquez (Colombia)
Mr. Raúl Montenegro (Argentina)

Poetry reading by Ms. Marije Langelaar (Netherlands)

Moderator: Mr. Felix Fuders, Right Livelihood College Valdivia, Chile.

Culture for the Transformation of Human Society

Wednesday, September 2
10:00 Colombian time/15:00 GMT/17:00 CET
Language: Spanish

Mr. Boaventura de Sousa (Portugal)
Ms. Magdalena Max-Neef (Chile), President Manfred Max-Neef Foundation
Mr. Freddy Ñáñez (Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela).

Poetry reading by Mr. Freddy Ñañez.

Moderator: Ms. Nayla Azzinnari, Right Livelihood Foundation

Media contacts

Emoke Bebiak

English, French & International Media

Phone: +41 (0)78 333 84 84

Nayla Azzinnari

Spanish Media

Phone: +54 9 11 5460 9860

Nina Tesenfitz

German Media

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Johannes Mosskin

Swedish Media

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