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Bali's big little book festival goes hybrid

Online events keep Southeast Asia's largest festival of words and ideas alive

The Science of Fiction, a hybrid film-screening event held at Indus. Evening events like these were popular among Jakartan creatives who traveled to Bali for the festival. (Photo by Felix Rio)

BALI, Indonesia -- Restaurateur and author Janet De Neefem launched the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival to help revive Bali's all-important tourism industry that had been decimated by the 2002 terrorist attacks that killed 202 people.

In the nearly two decades since, the UWRF has become Southeast Asia's largest festival of words and ideas, attracting a raft of internationally renowned scribes, artists, activists and leaders such as like Xanana Gusmao the first president of East Timor, Pulitzer Prize winner Viet Thanh Nguyen and cult novelist Irvine Welsh.

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