The City of Literature is a global program created by UNESCO in 2004 as a part of Creative Cities Network initiative. It is designed to strengthen the collaboration and promote the connection between cities that pay the tribute to the role that literature played in their urban growth.
There are certain criteria that communities must meet to become the City of Literature. Iowa City joined the program in 2008 undoubtedly satisfying all those criteria as its writing, and literary legacy is just too big to ignore. Firstly, Iowa City was one of the first places where creative writing was taught at the university level. Secondly, the town has numerous literary, educational institutions recognized not only by the USA but by the whole world. They explore advanced ways of teaching, support newly-minted as well as established writers and contribute to the global study of literature itself. All these factors taken together make Iowa City a unique place for authors and literary lovers. So, no wonder it is recognized by UNESCO as well.
If you are studying in Iowa City and majoring in literature, English or creative writing (or you’re just an avid reader), you can count yourself pretty lucky because you have access to all the privileges granted by the status of the UNESCO City of Literature. Apart from almost daily events that you can check out on the calendar, there are lots of planned occasions in 2018 that will impact the whole literature world. If you wish to be on the know, here is the list of the most essential activities of 2018.
Hosting the Meeting of 28 Cities of Literature
In April of 2018, the representatives of all Cities of Literature will visit Iowa for the annual UNESCO meeting. Of course, they will spend most of their time on working encounters, but the public will also have the opportunity to interact with delegates and find out the latest news from the literature world.
This meeting will be the first of its kind in Iowa City and will feature the 10th anniversary of the town being a member of UNESCO Creative Cities Network. The moderators of the events don’t spread the word about the program yet, but we bet that the schedule will be full of interesting occasions.
Open Mic Every Thursday at Uptown Bill’s
Every Thursday starting at 7 p.m. you will have the opportunity to enjoy 10-minute performances of musicians, poets, novelists and other kinds of artists. The event welcomes people of all abilities, ages and tastes. The coffee house itself has a very comfortable and cozy interior, so it’s very easy to come, order a cup of coffee and start enjoying yourself (and maybe get up the nerve for the performance).
Bi-Weekly Talk Art at the Mills
This is an event that will be held on Wednesdays, once in a fortnight. It will take place at the Mill, a local café. In order to register for Talk Art, first of all, you need to be at least 21 years old. Already intriguing? Well, not in vain. It will start after 10:00 p.m. and consist of late-night fiction and poetry readings. The performances will be done by the students of Iowa Writer’s Workshop. What is more, the administrators promise a lot of surprises on the way.