literature & poetry

Southbank Centre is the home of literature and spoken word events in the UK and the venue for London Literature Festival and Poetry International. Our programme is brimming with today’s bestselling authors, award-winning poetry and spoken word, and dramatised readings of iconic novels from some of the world’s most inspiring writers.

This season, Art Spiegelman discusses his harrowing graphic novel, Maus, podcaster Pandora Sykes of The High Low presents her brand new book, and world experts tackle the climate emergency.  

We also welcome Lisa Taddeo, Tayari Jones, Laura Bates, Samantha Irby and Ferran Adrià.

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Various times
30 Apr 2020 - 23 Aug 2020
Various times | 30 Apr 2020 - 23 Aug 2020
art & exhibitions
literature & poetry
Mark the centenary of the Scottish poet at an exhibition focused on his visual poetry and his life
Mark the centenary of the Scottish poet at an exhibition focused on his visual poetry and his life
8:00 pm
Wed 02 Sep 2020
8:00 pm | Wed 02 Sep 2020
literature & poetry
poetry
Join us for the premiere of a new film and poster publication by the legendary London writer
Join us for the premiere of a new film and poster publication by the legendary London writer
Martha Lane Fox, businesswoman and philanthropist
6:30 pm
Tue 08 Sep 2020
6:30 pm | Tue 08 Sep 2020
literature & poetry
talks & debates
In its 25th year, the annual book award that honours fiction by women presents its shortlist
In its 25th year, the annual book award that honours fiction by women presents its shortlist
Lisa Taddeo, author
7:30 pm
Thu 17 Sep 2020
7:30 pm | Thu 17 Sep 2020
literature & poetry
accessible events
A record of unmet needs, unspoken thoughts, disappointments, hopes and unrelenting obsessions
A record of unmet needs, unspoken thoughts, disappointments, hopes and unrelenting obsessions
David Mitchell, writer
7:30 pm
Mon 05 Oct 2020
7:30 pm | Mon 05 Oct 2020
literature & poetry
talks & debates
The bestselling author of Cloud Atlas launches his first novel in five years in a London exclusive
The bestselling author of Cloud Atlas launches his first novel in five years in a London exclusive
Candice Brathwaite, writer
4:00 pm
Sat 24 Oct 2020
4:00 pm | Sat 24 Oct 2020
literature & poetry
talks & debates
The blogger leads a thought-provoking, urgent and inspirational discussion on life as a black mother
The blogger leads a thought-provoking, urgent and inspirational discussion on life as a black mother
Johny Pitts, writer
7:00 pm
Tue 09 Mar 2021
7:00 pm | Tue 09 Mar 2021
gigs
literature & poetry
All aboard for an exhilarating whistle-stop tour of unseen Europe using music, words, images and film
All aboard for an exhilarating whistle-stop tour of unseen Europe using music, words, images and...
Adam Buxton, comedian
7:30 pm
Sun 25 Apr 2021
7:30 pm | Sun 25 Apr 2021
literature & poetry
spoken word & live literature
Parenthood, boarding school trauma and confrontations on trains: the comedian's memoir covers it all
Parenthood, boarding school trauma and confrontations on trains: the comedian's memoir covers...
David Sedaris, writer
Various times
10 Jul 2021 - 11 Jul 2021
Various times | 10 Jul 2021 - 11 Jul 2021
literature & poetry
Get to the heart of the human condition at a live show of the bestselling author’s sardonic wit
Get to the heart of the human condition at a live show of the bestselling author’s sardonic wit
Fi Glover and Jane Garvey, BBC broadcasters
8:00 pm
Tue 20 Jul 2021
8:00 pm | Tue 20 Jul 2021
literature & poetry
talks & debates
The live show spin-off from the podcast experience no one knew they wanted, until they got it
The live show spin-off from the podcast experience no one knew they wanted, until they got it

A variety of events in our literature and poetry programme, including talks, spoken word and live performances, are British Sign Language interpreted and/or Speech-to-Text transcribed. Access information for each event can be found in the ‘need to know’ section, underneath the main description of the event. 

If an event in our literature programme does not have an access provision, you can request one by emailing Customer Relations at customerrelations@southbankcentre.co.uk or by phoning our Ticket Office on 020 3879 9555 at least one month ahead of the event. We will try to provide a service wherever possible.

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You may be eligible for concessionary tickets if you have specific seating requirements, with a complimentary seat for your companion, under our Access Scheme.

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blog: literature & poetry

story
Poet Pratyusha tells us what’s beyond her lockdown window, and shares her poem 'stilltime'
story
Find out more about the debut novelist behind 2020's Book of the Year, Queenie
story
Top tips from Jasmine Dellimore and Meera Ghanshamdas of Moon Lane Books

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