Valley of Words is a non-profit and volunteer-driven initiative of The Valley of Words Foundation Trust. It brings together the best writers, critics and listeners from the worlds of fiction, non-fiction and poetry in a three-day Literature and Arts festival in the quaint town of Dehradun. Nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas, Dehradun offers an inspirational blend of culture and natural beauty to bring together artists and authors from across the world.
VoW has held three successful festivals, with the fourth virtual edition being organised from the 20th to 22nd of November this year. The pandemic this year has only strengthened our resolve to come together – stronger – to recreate the same Celebration of the Word in India’s first-of-its-kind immersive phygital literary event.
Open Access Festival
VoW is an inclusive and open access festival with no registration fee. It opens up a world for young adults, storytellers, bloggers, balladeers puppeteers, thespians, photographers, artists and craftspeople alike.
It organises concerts and walks, supports local handicrafts through its exhibitions and celebrates creative expressions across all genres. Our promise is to present the best of Indian literature and arts to an international audience every year – a multilingual, multigenre, intergenerational celebration of the Word and beyond – in order to forge newer cultures of critical thought and engagement.
Four Knowledge Verticals
VoW is structured such that eclectic interests are met through its Four Knowledge Verticals: English Literature, Hindi Sahitya (the best of which are showcased through the annual PFC-VoW Book Awards across seven categories), the RS Tolia Forum for Himalayan Ecosystems and Governance, and the Military History and Strategy sessions. The sessions are held simultaneously to offer something for all ages and interest groups.
Apart from this, we feature three exhibitions every year: Iti Kriti – for pan-Himalayan sustainable arts, crafts, and fashion, Iti Smriti – VoW’s own ethically-sourced and up-cycled memorabilia, and Iti Lekh – the book bazaar for especially curated reading lists, conversations with editors, publishers, and much more.
We have four pan-Indian debates this year: the bilingual VoW-KV/JNV Inter-School Debate, the bilingual VoW-Mantrana Inter-College Debate, the unprecedented Sanskrit-language VoW-Maharshi Valmik Vishwavidyalaya Inter-University Vaad-Vivaad Pratiyogita, and the Vox Populi Parliamentary Debate which features MPs from across the politicsal spectrum coming together for a conversation.
VoW celebrates diverse knowledge and ways of thinking by creating a platform for new writers to be heard. It gives space, time and encouragement to first-time authors, translators and narrators through book launches, and by facilitating conversations and dialogues with eminent authors.