From Wednesday, June 26, to Sunday, June 30, 2024, the Chania Book Festival returns for its third consecutive year, organized by the Municipality of Chania, in collaboration with the Region of Crete. With a renewed program, the festival will take place, as in the previous two years, at the Venetian Harbor of the city, between the Mediterranean Architecture Center, the “Mikis Theodorakis Theater,” and other iconic venues. Having as its central theme “Europe: Past and Future. Perspectives on Literature, Culture, Politics”, it invites visitors to explore the tumultuous past and the uncertainties of the future of Europe, through the lens of literature, history, and politics.

With the participation of more than 100 Greek and foreign writers, academics, translators and intellectuals from 17 countries and more than 60 thematic panels around contemporary themes, both from the field of literature and from the field of society, as well as book presentations, workshops, theatrical events, performances, concerts, regarding books of contemporary Greek and foreign prose, poetry, essays, by 35 publishers, the Chania Book Festival returns for its 3rd edition through innovative actions, aiming to become a meeting place for the book lovers from Greece and around the world.

The ambition of the festival is to become an annual institution, gathering contemporary Greek literature and intellectual thought, while also having an international character with invitations to significant foreign authors, academics, and intellectuals. The goal is to extend the festival throughout the city of Chania, with readings and events taking place in bookstores, libraries, as well as open spaces so that gradually, during the festival days, the city will come alive for it. A deeper goal is to expand the love for reading, familiarizing everyone with the object of “book,” so that it becomes part of the daily lives of as many citizens as possible.

In the words of the Festival’s Director, Manolis Piblis, “In a complex era, we organize a festival with individual existence in mind. The person who seeks points of balance but struggles to find them amidst the whirlwind of information, ongoing events, diverse advertising and propaganda, conflicting stimuli. The book, knowledge, genuine democratic dialogue, and entertainment are elements that offer balance, give strength to the person with sensitive antennas, the one who feels uncomfortable in the realm of appearances, enabling them to gain self-confidence, to stand on their own feet. Even more so when such individuals, who are many yet also alone, gather together somewhere in a creative atmosphere, a different atmosphere, it generates uplift, produces power and hope. This is the value of a festival. The creation of another world within the known world, the fusion of individual existential struggle with collective vision. And this has a deeper existential, social, and political significance.”

The 3rd Chania Book Festival is organized by the Municipality of Chania in co-organization with the Region of Crete and with the cooperation of cultural organizations and institutions, as well as bookstores of the city. Thenature of the festival is purely festive. There is no book exhibition; only the books of the invited authors are sold at relevant points within the festival spaces, in collaboration with interested bookstores in the city.