The Corfu Literary Festival is proud to be hosting events in some of the most historic and loveliest buildings on the island, providing further charm and atmosphere to the presentations and forming part of the cultural aspect of the Festival itself. Corfu's rich and varied heritage is reflected in the diversity of her architecture and our friends and colleagues working at these buildings and institutions are delighted to welcome the Festival's speakers and guests. Visitors may wish to arrive a little early for the evening presentations so that they can explore their surroundings before settling down to listen to the speakers.
For 2020's Festival, we have had to find lovely, unique and alternative outdoor venues for the events, so that our guests and participants may be socially distanced and safely in the fresh air. Details to follow.
Palace of St George and St Michael, Municipal Gallery
University of Ionion, Academy Building
Central Public Library, English Barracks, Old Fortress
Gymnastikos Athletic Club, est 1823
Capodistrias Museum and Grounds, Evropouli
Corfu Reading Society, est 1836
In this our third year of the Festival, in addition to our extraordinary Authors XI guest speakers, we are delighted to be welcoming the following guest presenters
Sabine Durrant is a former journalist who has worked at the Independent, The Sunday Times and the Guardian. She has written eight novels, including the psychological thrillers Under Your Skin, Remember Me This Way, Take Me In, and the bestselling Lie With Me. Her latest novel, Finders, Keepers, a whodunnit described by the Sunday Times as ‘reminiscent of Virago classics or the monologues of Alan Bennett…as rich a portrait as in any novel this year’, was published in July. She lives in south London with her husband, the writer Giles Smith, and their three children.
Sarah Churchwell is Professor in American Literature and Chair of Public Understanding of the Humanities at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, where she is director of the UK’s national festival of the humanities, the Being Human Festival. She is the author of Careless People: Murder, Mayhem and The Invention of The Great Gatsby, The Many Lives of Marilyn Monroe, and most recently, Behold, America: A History of America First and the American Dream. She has written for the New York Review of Books, Prospect, Guardian, New Statesman, Financial Times, Times Literary Supplement, and New York Times Book Review, among many others, and comments regularly on arts, culture, and politics for television, radio, and film documentaries. She has judged many literary prizes, including the 2014 Man Booker Prize and the 2017 Baillie Gifford Prize for nonfiction, and was a co-winner of the 2015 Eccles British Library Writer’s Award. Named by Prospect magazine one of the world’s Top Fifty Thinkers in 2019, she is currently working on a short project about Gone with the Wind, and a long project about Henry James.
Elizabeth Speller read archaeology and classics at Cambridge, followed by a postgraduate degree in ancient history. She is a poet and author of four non-fiction books, including a biography of Emperor Hadrian, companion guides to Rome and Athens and a memoir, TheSunlight on the Garden. Elizabeth Speller has a Cambridge MA and MPhil. and was a visiting scholar at Lucy Cavendish College. Elizabeth is Chair of the London Hellenic Prize.
Her three novels include The Return of Captain John Emmett and At Break of Day. They are published in eight countries. She was short-listed for the Forward Prize for Poetry and provided the libretto for Michael Berkeley's work Farewell, written in memory of Sir Paul McCartney 's wife Linda. Her journalism includes The Independent, the Financial Times, the TLS, and Vogue. She has taught at Cambridge, Bristol and Birmingham Universities and was Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the University of Warwick. Elizabeth is very experienced in teaching mature students and her classes tend to be thematic and discursive, as well as informative, often including visual material and music; she hopes by the end of her course students feel they have learned rather than simply been taught. She lives in Gloucestershire and Paxos and has just published an anthology or short stories..