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Kosmopolis 2019

10th Amplified Literature Fest

From 20 to 24 March 2019, the tenth edition of Kosmopolis will present a five-day programme bringing together established authors and emerging new voices to address some of the main challenges facing culture and literature in their most open conception.

Deep Blue Rhapsody wins the 19th Lletra Prize


“Deep Blue Rhapsody” has been selected as the winner of the 19th Lletra Prize for the best digital initiative to promote Catalan literature, organised by the Prudenci Bertrana Foundation and the Open University of Catalonia’s Lletre Project. The project was presented at ...

Books and Places for a Literary Summer


Eternal cities, the centre of the world, a mysterious lake, the red planet, wonderland or the closest place possible… What book would you pack if you had to choose? This is the question we asked the CCCB team. And these are these are the results – their suggestions for a literary summer...

María José Llergo

Canción de Soldados

We’re celebrating the end of K19 with a concert by María José Llergo, one of the most prominent voices in contemporary flamenco and a singer with a particular affinity for lyrics that shine a light on social struggles. Llergo sings about love, sadness and incomprehension ...

Natza Farré

Sexism in the Headlines

on La competència (The Competition) and author of Curs de feminisme per a microones (A course in feminism for microwaves) (2018)– carries out a critical reading of various headlines. A session that looks at narratives in journalism, helping ...

Helen Hester and Nick Srnicek

After Work: What Is Left?

There is a certain tension when reflecting on the post-work era. With automatization of the most repetitive tasks, jobs traditionally associated with men are rejected, whilst stereotypically female jobs flourish. At the same time, the automatization of the world may lead to a situation in which ...

Ian Watson and Laura Huerga

Worlds of Ursula K. Le Guin

The science-fiction writher Ian Watson and the publisher Laura Huerga talk about the film Worlds of Ursula K. Le Guin by Arwen Curry (EE.UU, 2018, 68'), a documentary which offers a journey through the worlds, both the real and the fictional, of Ursula K. Le Guin, best known for her ...

Susan Orlean and Bel Olid

We speak to Susan Orlean, one of the leading lights in modern American cultural journalism, who has written for The New Yorker magazine since 1987, after working at Rolling StoneSpy, Esquire and Vogue. Orlean ...

María José Llergo


We’re celebrating the end of K19 with a concert by María José Llergo, one of the most prominent voices in contemporary flamenco and a singer with a particular affinity for lyrics that shine a light on social struggles. Llergo sings about love, sadness and incomprehension ...

Paula Bonet

The Pregnant Body Without a Foetus

The story of the feminist revolution bravely shows the taboos that women have faced. The art of Paula Bonet is a clear example when it comes to focusing on the dramatic experiences of women, previously silenced by heteropatriarchal culture. Bonet’s literature, as well as exposing and ...

Talking About Books: From Literary Criticism to Podcasts, Booktubers and Book Clubs

Marina Porras, Marc Rovira, Marta Botet Borràs, Ricard Ruiz Garzón, Marc Pastor y Albert Forns

In this talk, we introducd some of the spaces where we can talk about books, from literary criticism magazines to reading clubs, organised by Catalan libraries with very good attendance, through to new spaces for discussion on the Internet

Lisa Randall

How Physics Scales the Universe

Quantum theories help us to understand a reality that is hidden from our senses, but which affects our daily lives more than we can imagine. Lisa Randall is one of the most important female scientists of our time, author of seminal works that have contributed to our understanding of the universe ...

Han Kang and Jorge Carrión

Fiction as a Scalpel

With The Vegetarian, winner of the Man Booker prize, Han Kang has become the most prominent female Korean writer. The novel discusses insubordination, misogynist violence, contemporary art, food and humans’ relationship with the plant world, amongst other important questions ...

Blixa Bargeld

Solo Vocal Performance

What is voice? Is it distinct from music? And what about sound? Blixa Bargeld, vocalist with Einstürzende Neubauten and a pioneer of industrial music, offers us a performance in which their boundaries metamorphosize, in one of the German artist’s most poetic and ironic facets. A performance in which the famous performer shows that his voice is able to produce almost impossible sounds, whilst at the same time including scientific, poetic and philosophical games with his characteristic elegance. ...

Blixa Bargeld and the meaning of letter K

Solo Vocal Performance

The unexpected preamble by Blixa Bargeld at the tenth edition of Kosmopolis. The German artist offers us a short dissertation on the meaning of the letter K in the Egyptian alphabet, identifies the element corresponding to it on Mendeleiev’s periodic table, and the specific usefulness ...

Creative Artificial Intelligences

Anna Giralt Gris, Carme Torras, Lali Barrière and Carles Sora

At a moment when artificial intelligence has made a major leap in its creative applications, we wish to create a space for debate as to the nature of automated artistic creation. We share a stage with scientists and artists who are experts in artificial intelligence, philosophy, literature ...

Rasha Abbas, Hamid Sulaiman, Golan Haji and Bashkim Shehu

Stories from Exile

What’s it like to write from exile? Can fiction describe a situation as complicated as a civil war with more nuances? The Syrian writers Rasha Abbas, Hamid Sulaiman and Golan Haji talk to us about their experience as authors who have been forced to leave behind their country and find refuge in another in order to create their work.

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Paul Mason

The Red Star and the Green Planet

In Red Star (1908) by Alexandr Bogdanov, a communist society on Mars observes the Earth. On realising that the human species has been incapable of overthrowing capitalism, they propose its destruction. More than a century after its publication, Paul Mason poses the question anew: ...

Jordi Costa and Vicente Molina Foix

Kubrick’s Labyrinth

Stanley Kubrick’s film oeuvre appears to be timeless, opening itself up to new viewers as though enigmatic architecture built on uncountable layers of sense waiting to be deciphered. The writer Vicente Molina Foix, who collaborated with the filmmaker in the Spanish dubbing of his films ...

Laura Huerga, Llucia Ramis and Luna Miguel

Why Women will Save the Planet

Up until now, women’s problems were not seen as relevant when discussing climate change. It wasn’t until the voices of the ecofeminists gained strength that we have begun to recognise the indisputable intersection between gender equality and the move towards decarbonised societies. ...

Vicenç Villatoro and Sam Abrams

The Logic of Locus

Literary fiction – and non-fiction! – is almost always rooted in a physical place, be it real or imaginary. Literature is written from a place. And literary stories have a setting or invent one for the action to take place in. Is the place from which stories are written and their ...

Víctor Sala, Joan Burdeus and Sonia Fernández-Vidal

Why Are Scriptwriters Obsessed with Physics?

Is it a coincidence that Walter White’s alter ego in Breaking Bad is called Heisenberg? Can you write a happy ending after the Uncertainty Principle? Scriptwriters should not ignore science when writing, as some of the most passionate stories to be serialised for TV are those that have dug deep into quantum physics.

Juan Antonio Bayona and Àngel Sala

Tales of High Fantasy

The characters and creatures created as part of the grand tradition of fantasy literature have offered a constant source of inspiration for the great filmmakers who have tackled this genre. J. A. Bayona, currently one of the most relevant names in fantasy film, speaks with Àngel Sala, ...


Coral Cruz, David Trueba, Alberto Marini and Mònica García

In the frame of “Is the Novel Always Better?”, Professional session on literary adaptations. We have a debate with leading adapters. When you adapt a work of literature, it might seem like you’re starting off with part of the work already done, but the truth is that bringing ...


Víctor Santos, Anna Soler-Pont, Lolita Bosch and Víctor Sala

In the frame of “Is the Novel Always Better?”, Professional session on literary adaptations. Often when discussing film adaptations of a novel or a comic, only those who have created the adaptation take part: scriptwriters or directors who have taken a pre-existing work and made ...

Daniel Cassany

Eulogy for the Critical (and Useless) Reading of Stories

Daniel Cassany is the author of books that offer a wide ranging and interdisciplinary analysis of the processes connected with writing and reading. The author speaks to Juan Carlos Calvo, Director of Barcelona’s Camp de l’Arpa – Caterina Albert Library, about the actions, ...

Doubles Vies (Non-Fiction)

Talk with Marcel Ventura, Jordi Panyella and Bernat Ruiz Domènech

Talk with Marcel Ventura, Jordi Panyella (Pol·len Edicions) and Bernat Ruiz Domènech about the film Doubles Vies (Non-Fiction) by Olivier Assayas (France, 2018, 107'), a portrait of current times in publishing, in which analogue comes up against the new digital formats.

Eva Baltasar, Marta Orriols, Tina Vallès and Laura Pinyol

First Successful Novels

The writers Eva Baltasar (Permafrost, 2018), Marta Orriols (Aprendre a parlar amb les plantes [Learning to talk to plants], 2018), Tina Vallès (La memòria de l’arbre [The memory of the tree], 2017) and Laura Pinyol (El risc més gran [The greatest risk], 2018) talk about th...

I want to adapt this film or comic; what should I do?

Ignacio Monter

In the frame of “Is the Novel Always Better?”, Professional session on literary adaptations. During the creative process, legal questions often arise that can get in the way. In this practical session, the lawyer for Guionistes Associats de Catalunya (Associated Scriptwriters of ...

Android Love

With Libby Heaney, Joana Moll and Núria Gómez Gabriel

Of all the spheres of romantic connection, the tecnologichal is currently the most controversial. In online dating, love is a distance literary meeting, while intimacy is a negotiation of digital systems that connect people. Applications like Tinder displace romantic relationships in a utilitarian ...

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Nuccio Ordine

Eulogy for the Critical (and Useless) Reading of Stories

Nuccio Ordine is professor of Italian literature and author various books that defend the value of humanistic knowledge. The author speaks to Olga Cuadrado, director of the Three Cultures Foundation’s Fátima Mernissi Library in Seville, and Julián Figueres, director of Barcelona’s ...

Simon Roy, Rodrigo Fresán and Laura Fernández

The Stories that Move Kubrick

Stanley Kubrick was undoubtedly one of the greatest storytellers with a camera in history. Every single one of his films were based on books, be they literary classics or bestsellers. And no genre was left behind when it came to adapting works in his own way: war and ultraviolence, supernatural ...

The Stories that Move the Slam

Fourth edition of Gran Slam Barcelona

Poetry Slam with Marta B., Adriana Bertrán, Comikk MG, Dive Dibosso, Rakaya Fetuga, Margalida Followthelida, Lisette Ma Neza, Diego Mattarucco, Dani Orviz and Saiban. The greatest international exponents of Poetry Slam come together in this edition of the festival, whose underlying thread ...

Mona Eltahawy and Najat El Hachmi

Genuine Freedom

The daughters of Muslim families in Europe must face different challenges to defend their individual freedoms and their emancipation as women. On the one hand, the patriarchal traditions that come from their country of origin, intimately linked with religion. On the other, the onslaughts of ...

The ‘Bit’ Generation: Writing for New Formats

Beatriz Liebe, Daniel Calabuig, Blanca Bardagil, Ana Alonso, Oriol Ripoll and Marisol López

How do you write a play for robots? And what about writing for a podcast or a videogame? How can you play with a book without losing the textual essence? Can you tell a story on Instagram? In this round table we aim to analyse the extent to which the physical format conditions the story, by presenting several innovative cases of local productions.

Agustín Fernández Mallo, Amelia Gamoneda and Gustavo Schwartz

Metaphor: The Old and New Story that Creates the World

Just as metaphors have been necessary for building social, communicative and even anthropological systems, they have also helped to create scientific thought and language. Agustín Fernández Mallo, Amelia Gamoneda and Gustavo Schwartz explore the metaphorical and analogical mechanisms ...

1rst Schools’ Poetry Slam Championship

Competition between 400 young people aged between 12 and 16

Some 400 young people aged between 12 and 16 from four different schools take part in this new championship, in which voice, poetry and performance are the only means of achieving the title of best rhapsode. The 1st Schools’ Poetry Slam Championship is the culmination of three months of work by students from  four high schools in the city (Institut Montserrat, Institut Barres i Ones, Institut Valldaura and Institut Miquel Tarradell) and local poets from the Poetry Slam Barcelona network. ...

Philip Ball and José Ignacio Latorre

Keys Aspects and Dilemmas of the Quantum Story

Despite this science still being in its infancy, humans are able to understand and manipulate material at the subatomic level and probe the origins and development of the universe. Scientific development provides the basis for introducing a new disruptive technology: quantum computing. The ...

Gonçalo M. Tavares and Enrique Vila-Matas

Explorers Among Ruins

Gonçalo M. Tavares and Enrique Vila-Matas are two big names in modern literature with radically different aesthetics and literary offerings but who, from different perspectives, trace the course of time’s disappearance and dissolution. If post-modernity has led stories to break ...

Jocelyn Pook Ensemble

Women's Magazine Tango

The beautiful and hypnotic music of the Jocelyn Pook Ensemble is the ideal soundtrack for the K19 inaugural session. The group, led by the well-known British composer and violinist who gives it its name, mixes styles and music while fusing string instruments and singing to create mysterious ...

Richard Sennett and Carles Muro

Narratives of the Homo Faber

In this conversation, Richard Sennett addressed different aspects of cities, urbanism and inequalities. He analysed the impact of global capitalism on the homogenisation of cities and new technologies as one more way of standardising life. He also talked about coexistence and the relationship ...

The Bad Pupil

Taller Estampa

Through artistic practice, the Taller Estampa reflects on the discourse around artificial intelligence.

The Particles That Make the World Go Round

Eva Rexach

At the upcoming Kosmopolis 19 we’ll talk about quantum physics and all the cultural, political and ethical implications of this science. To set the scene, we offer a timeline from the birth of quantum mechanics through to its presence in different areas of our daily lives, as well as ...

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Seven Gems to Discover at K19

Eva Rexach

We propose a little journey into the future to take a glimpse of the upcoming Kosmopolis 2019. You’ll see a selection of what promise to be the main highlights of the festival, with events of all types: talks, films, concerts, performances, theatre… We want to start by giving you ...

Android Love

Núria Gómez Gabriel

We reflect on how love relationships have been transformed by the introduction of new technologies and artificial intelligence.

The Singularity

José Ignacio Latorre

Computation’s possibility for self-learning is leading us towards a point of technological singularity where an artificial intelligence, capable of self-improvement, will surpass the limits of human intelligence.

General Theory of Rubbish

Agustín Fernández Mallo

On the evolution of culture, now that we are living in the post era, where artists and thinkers are recycling the remnants of a society that has come undone.