Edinburgh to light up with literature


Edinburgh will set itself aglow with literary history next month as part of the Scottish capital’s push to raise its profile as a world cultural centre.

The two-week event, Enlighten, will see animated interpretations of Enlightenment quotations projected onto historic buildings in the city’s New Town area. The words of David Hume, James Hutton, Allan Ramsay, Robert Fergusson, Adam Smith and Lady Cockburn will be featured.

Six contemporary writers have also been commissioned to record new fiction and poetry that ‘responds to the wisdom” of the Enlightenment figures. The works of Gavin Inglis, William Letford, Kirsty Logan, Ken MacLeod, James Robertson and JL Williams will be available to download, along with details of the architectural and literary history of each area.

Enlighten will be unveiled March 1, a date chosen to coincide with the launch of a campaign aimed at persuading tourism businesses to make more of the city’s literary legacy.

Ali Bowden, director of the Edinburgh Unesco City of Literature Trust, sees the project matching the city’s architectural brilliance with its world-renowned literature. It will “provide an arresting experience for passers-by, both locals and visitors, as well as a focal point for those planning a trip to Edinburgh,” he told The Scotsman.

Edinburgh was designated the world’s first city of literature in 2004.