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Culture

French Literary Festival in Pau opens with happiness theme

media Arts centre in Pau Wikimedia Commons

A new literary festival kicks off on Friday in the south western French town of Pau with “happiness” as its inaugural theme.

“France has lost its happiness. It is the most pessimistic society in the world, much more pessimistic than that of Afghanistan or Syria, for example,” said the Mayor of Pau, François Bayrou, somewhat exaggerating recent statistics on the levels of pessimism in France.

Launching a major new festival was among Bayrou’s key promises during his campaign to be elected Mayor in May this year.

The festival slogan is “Ideas shape the world” and over three days there will be lectures and discussion groups featuring well-known French authors and literary personalities, including philosopher and former minister Luc Ferry.

Attendance is free and and around 50 publishers and bookshops will be displaying their wares at the accompanying book fair.
 

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