InKo Centre and the Korean Literature Translation Institution (LTI Korea) are delighted to support Korean poet Haam Seong-ho at the Sangam House Writing Residency, at Adi Shakti, Auroville from 8 January to 4 February 2010. Dr Arshia Sattar, convenor of the Sangam House Writing Residency, outlines this unique programme in arts and letters that aims to provides writers from around the world, the opportunity to live and work in a supportive environment and to deepen their understanding of the diverse emotional and social climates in which literature is conceived and received.

The Sangam House International Writers’ Residency programme enters its second season this year, running for ten weeks between the end of November 2009 nd early February 2010. Once again, we are able to welcome writers from all over the world to live and write together in a secluded and supportive environment. This year, Sangam House

will host 15 writers, including 9 writers from India, others from Austria, Brazil, Denmark, Germany and our second Korean resident, Mr. Haam Seong-ho. As usual, we plan a series ofreadings in Pondicherry and Chennai to bring the works of our residents to an interested local public.

The Sangam House Residency Programme is an annual gathering of writers at the Adishakti property in the heart of Pondicherry, India. We recognize the dearth of such opportunities in South Asia and strive to encourage the work of those writing in all languages, regional and dominant. Such a unique environment enriches the work of its participants and the texture of international literature. Our programme also facilitates interaction between the visiting writers and the local communities. Cultivating such an intersection infuses the local communities with inspirations and new ideas, while allowing each participating writer to deepen his or her understanding of the diverse emotional and social climates in which literature is conceived and received.

Most importantly, our residency programs are designed for writers who have published to some acclaim but not yet enjoyed substantial commercial success. Sangam House seeks to give writers(and we include here translators, poets, laywrights and those involved in creating fiction and non-fiction works) a chance to build a substantial and influential network of personal and professional relationships that can deepen their own work, in effect, expanding and diversifying literature. We understand that literature can and should evolve, allowing it to remain a thriving force of illumination for our times.
 

Each year, Sangam House seeks partnerships and raises funds from various arts and literature councils, publishers and private donors to ensure that this special opportunity to create and support literary cultures remains vibrant and dynamic. We are proud to have an exchange partnership with the Toji Residency in Korea, facilitated by the InKo Centre, Chennai and the Arts Councul Korea (ARKO).Our first exchange resident was Susan Mridula Koshy who has since won the Shakti Bhatt First Book Award for her collection of short stories entitled. If it is Sweet. We look forward to many more such fruitful collaborations and cultural exchanges between India and Korea and the larger international community that supports and sustains Sangam House.

DR ARSHIA SATTAR