Free the Word to come to London

<p>World literature festival &lsquo;Free the Word!&rsquo; featuring writers from around the globe and organised by International PEN is to return to London for its second anniversary.<br /><br />The festival will take place at venues across Shakespeare&rsquo;s Globe, Southwark Playhouse and the Young Vic from 16th-19th April this year. The event is being sponsored by Bloomberg and supported by the Arts Council England. <br /><br />The festival will feature world writers such as Nobel Laureate Nadine Gordimer, Mexican journalist and human rights activist, Lydia Cacho, and Iranian novelist and academic Azar Nafisi. Other emerging voices include Petina Gappah, a new talent from Zimbabwe, Czech writer Tom&aacute;&scaron; Zme&scaron;kal and French author Florian Zeller.</p><p>For the first time the event will have work and events for children and their families, which will come under the heading &lsquo;Felt Pen&rsquo;. Free the Word! will also present the first public performance of Malawian writer and poet, Jack Mapanje&rsquo;s, debut play The President&rsquo;s Tobacco.</p><p>Sir Tom Stoppard, International PEN author advocate, said the event was an opportunity to, &quot;make sparks across the divide between national literatures&quot;.</p>