Penguin Random House India

New Delhi,November 2019: Penguin Random House India announces the 13thedition of The Penguin Annual Lecture to be held on Wednesday, 11 December 2019 at The Imperial, New Delhi. This year, award-winning, bestselling author Sudha Murty will deliver the lecture on ‘Storytelling and Social Change: How Literature Influences Who We Are and What We Do’.

Mrs Murty will bring two of her passions to the lecture – storytelling and social work – to showcase the deep-rooted connection between literary arts and philanthropy. In addition to being a much-loved and eminent writer, Sudha Murty is widely known for her philanthropic efforts and she will share her views on storytelling as a catalyst to bring about change in the way we think and thereby transform society. Taking cues from her written work and life experiences, she will talk about how literature transcends borders and languages and has the power to initiate conversations to bring about social revolutions.

Commenting on the topic of the lecture, Mrs Sudha Murty says, ‘Writing is a medium of my expression and experience. I have been blessed that my personal experiences have touched the hearts of readers. In my life’s journey of literature and social work, I have unexpectedly found that reading has sparked an interest in some men, women and even children to begin to make a difference in a small way. To me, that is the real success of my work.’

An iconic writer and a brilliant storyteller, Sudha Murty has carved a special place in the Indian literary landscape and in the heart of Indian readers. As chairperson for Infosys Foundation, a public charitable trust founded in 1996, Mrs Murty focuses on healthcare, education, public hygiene, empowerment of women and much more. She dedicates her time to impress upon the importance of reading and her efforts have led to the setting up of more than 60,000 libraries across Karnataka. A prolific writer in English and Kannada, she has written novels, technical books, travelogues, collections of short stories and non-fiction pieces, and nine bestselling books for children. Her books have been translated into all major Indian languages. Sudha Murty is the recipient of the R.K. Narayan Award for Literature (2006), the Padma Shri (2006), and the Attimabbe Award from the Government of Karnataka for excellence in Kannada literature (2011). In 2018, her book Three Thousand Stitches: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives won the popular award in the non-fiction category at the 16th Crossword Book Award. This year, her title The Upside-Down King: Unusual Tales about Rama and Krishna has been shortlisted for the Popular Awards in children’s category of the 17th Crossword Book Awards.

Penguin has published over thirty titles by Sudha Murty, with The Daughter from a Wishing Tree: Unusual Tales about Women in Mythology being the latest. This is the fourth book in her popular mythology series comprising The Upside-Down King: Unusual Tales about Rama and Krishna, The Man From The Egg:Unusual Tales About The Trinity, and The Serpent’s Revenge: Unusual Tales from the Mahabharata.

Niti Kumar, SVP marketing, digital and communications, Penguin Random House India said, ‘Mrs Murty’s stories have enchanted, entertained and educated readers for nearly two decades and we are fortunate to have published so many of her books. Her philanthropic contributions and her body of work have made a significant impact on society and I am glad that she chose The Penguin Annual Lecture to talk about bringing social change through storytelling.’

The Penguin Annual Lecture is one of the most anticipated publishing events. Since its launch, it has hosted some of the most exceptional and brightest minds across the globe. Luminaries who have delivered the lecture include journalist and writer Thomas Friedman in 2007; diplomat and writer Chris Patten in 2008; Nobel Prize–winning economist Amartya Sen in 2009; eminent historian Ramachandra Guha in 2010; renowned spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 2011; Bharat Ratna awardee scientist and former president of India Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in 2012; cinema superstar and cultural icon Amitabh Bachchan in 2013; bestselling author Dan Brown in 2014; legendary writer Ruskin Bond in 2015; author of the popular Wimpy Kid series, Jeff Kinney, in 2016; UNICEF Ambassador and internationally acclaimed superstar Priyanka Chopra in 2017; and historian, philosopher and bestselling author Professor Yuval Noah Harari in 2018.

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