Everything you need to know about the Jewish Literary Festival 2020

Jewish Literary Festival

An abundance of books and authors promised for the third edition of the Jewish Literary Festival 

You don’t have to be Jewish to enjoy the 3rd Jewish Literary Festival (JLF) on 15 March 2020 – you just have to love words, reading and conversation. While the heart of the festival is Jewish-themed, the speakers, events and audience all defy narrow categorisation and many of the talks will be of universal interest.  

Taking place in the centre of Cape Town at the Gardens Community Centre, home to the iconic Jacob Gitlin Library, the SA Jewish Museum and the Cape Town Holocaust and Genocide Centre, all of whom partner the event, JLF2020 will run from 09h00 to 17h00. Join us to engage with more than 70 wordsmiths, poets, journalists, filmmakers and educators in more than 40 sessions. Our presenters all have a Jewish connection or are engaged with subjects of Jewish interest and, with multiple sessions running simultaneously throughout the day, the JLF covers everything from fiction, sport, food,  and memoir, to politics, journalism, the arts and more – a wide choice to suit all tastes. 

Amongst the list of outstanding authors you can meet this year are award-winning UK author Thomas Harding, Australian writers Joanne Fedler and Alan Landau, our very own Jonny Steinberg and Tamar Hodes out from the UK as well as local literary luminaries Joanne Jowell, Steven ‘Boykey’ Sidley, Jonathan Ancer, Alan Paton Award-winner Terry Kurgan, Marilyn Martin, Albie Sachs, Dennis Davis, Thuli Madonsela Diane Awerbuck,  Anastacia Thomson, Alex Latimer, Tanya Farber, Barry Cohen, Gail Schimmel, Hedi Lampert and more. Each presenter will bring their special way with words to the event. And with interviewers such as Pippa Hudson, Nancy Richards, Lisa Chait, John Maytham, and Helen Moffett, you know you’re in for lively discussion.

Expect debates, launches, panel discussions, readings, presentations and book-style activities. Any of our authors will be more than happy to autograph their books, all of which will be on sale on site through The Book Lounge, our associated bookseller.  

This year, in partnership with Herzlia Middle & High Schools, the JLF boasts a customised Young Adult program, with interactive sessions designed to pique the interest of teens. For our younger audience of ages 4 to 11, a full children’s programme  is on offer right next door to the JLF campus, at Gardens Commercial High, in partnership with PJ Library© and Herzlia School. Puppets, music,book-writing and a PJ Library Story Walk are just some of the creative activities from 10h00 to 13h00. A full day of supervised fun is the promise with sports and reading activities in the afternoon.  

Building on the enormous success of the previous two festivals, the JLF programme is once again brimming with literary activities and is not to be missed.

The full programme will be up shortly on our website www.jewishliteraryfestival.co.za. Its aim is to promote constructive dialogue and discussion in the true spirit of Jewish life without promoting any single political or religious agenda. 

Ticket price includes admission to all sessions, a delicious lunch from Café Riteve, and access to bespoke coffee bars that will be open throughout the day for that brief pause between sessions. 

Don’t be disappointed! Take advantage of the Early Bird Special running from January 20 to February 14.  


Date: Sunday 15 March

Venue; Gardens Community Centre, Hatfield Road, Cape Town

Time: 09h00 to 17h00

Day Ticket prices: Early Bird Special (from January 20 to February 14) R340

From February 15 to March 15: R380. 

Under 12 years: R100 and Teens R115

Booking is open: https://qkt.io/XgrEbb

Read More about JLF 2020: Fabulous feminine energy infuses JLF 2020

To read the Editor’s column for February click here

To read or download the February issue of the Chronicle in PDF click here

To read the most read article of the December/January issue, click here

Portal to the Jewish Community: to see a list of all the Jewish organisations in Cape Town with links to their websites, click here


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