festival

London Literature Festival

18 Oct 2018 - 28 Oct 2018

Now in its twelfth year, Southbank Centre’s London Literature Festival brings together today’s leading writers, thinkers and cultural observers to explore the burning issues of our times. 

This year we invite you on a journey across centuries and borders to celebrate the power of literature to reflect on the world in which we live. Our journey takes in everything from a celebration of Homer’s Odyssey to an examination of contemporary America in the lead-up to the midterm elections. 

At the heart of the festival is a celebration of Homer’s epic poem, The Odyssey, marking its first-ever translation into English by a woman, Emily Wilson. This timeless classic is explored through live readings, talks and workshops with writers from Mary Beard to Madeline Miller. The theme of homeland and journeys continues in appearances from leading writers including Esi Edugyan, Aida Edemariam and Mohsin Hamid. 

We delve into the political and social landscapes of contemporary America with events including a rare appearance from Salman Rushdie discussing his provocative new novel and author Marilynne Robinson advocating the value of hope, and talks on topics from the American Dream to feminism in Trump's America. 

Other highlights include exclusive memoir launches from the Who's frontman Roger Daltrey and Oscar-winning actor Sally Field; hip-hop artist Akala and historian David Olusoga discussing empire and race; Carol Ann Duffy reading from her final collection as Poet Laureate, and a full day of events celebrating Young Adult literature.

Multi-buy discount 

A multi-buy discount is available on a selected events—look out for the yellow label in listings. Book two or more of these events in the same transaction and receive a 20% discount.

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Young Adult Lit Day

Buy a Day Pass (27 Oct) for some of the most exciting authors of Young Adult fiction, new and emerging poetry and spoken word, and a fanzine fair.

book a Day Pass

Paining by W.S. Graham

Free

Free

Various times
until 31 Mar 2019
Various times | until 31 Mar 2019
Art
Literature
Make room for creativity at an interactive reconstruction of poet WS Graham’s creative space
Make room for creativity at an interactive reconstruction of poet WS Graham’s creative space
A lady looking over books at National Poetry Library Open Day

Free

Free

12:00 pm
Sun 21 Oct 2018
12:00 pm | Sun 21 Oct 2018
Literature
Poetry
Set off on a journey into the heart of modern poetry at our open day on the theme of odysseys
Set off on a journey into the heart of modern poetry at our open day on the theme of odysseys

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don't miss

20 Oct
Literature
The US novelist and essayist reflects on hope and generosity in tumultuous times
22 Oct
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Uncover the intrigues of the heart at a reading of the new novel by author André Aciman
see all events

Young Adult Lit Day

Buy a Day Pass (27 Oct) for some of the most exciting authors of Young Adult fiction, new and emerging poetry and spoken word, and a fanzine fair.

book a Day Pass

literature stories

story
The author discusses her debut book Ponti and taking The Odyssey away from the male gaze
story
Enjoy eight stand-out musical collaborations featuring The Who frontman
story
Read an extract from Churchwell’s new book, Behold, America

shop London Literature Festival

The Colour of Books Print

Tool The Bookworm Dandelion

Littery London Tea Towel

Book Tote Bag