European Literature Night

In many ways the highlight of the EUNIC Netherlands calendar, the European Literature Night brings together both celebrated authors and promising literary talents from all over Europe. The writers are invited to tackle a central theme in small panels, led by a moderator. There is room for debate, for the of reading excerpts, for monologues and key-notes. The Night is a space for exploration, for understanding differences and recognizing similarities, in this way reimagining ‘Europeanness’ for both authors and audience. Thus, each year, the European Literature Night sketches an impressionist, fragmented and dynamic picture of the European literary landscape.

The European Literature Night is partly made possible by the European Commission


This year, the European Literature Night will appear as a part of the programme of the Forum on European Culture, and paired with the State of European Literature, a key note co-organized by UvA. This year’s theme is ‘Literature, the Antidote’, taking European writers as a starting point to explore our world after the Covid-19 pandemic.

Information about this year’s night can be found on our event page.


The 2019 European Literature Night centred around the theme of the library, collaborating with the Amsterdam Public Libary to celebrate its 100th anniversary. Partly taking place at the library, partly at De Brakke Grond, twelve writers and poets from all over Europe talked of librarians and readers, about accidental encounters with books and people, about the first library they ever visited, about nostalgia for paper and dust, endless rows of books on shelves, the thrill of digital texts available world-wide. About the past and future of reading.

Authors attending included Marek Šindelka (Czech Republic), Almudena Grandes (Spain), Delphine Lecompte (Belgium) en Felicitas von Lovenberg (Germany), Andrej Blatnik (Slovenia), Lina Buividavičiūtė (Lithuania), Gandolfo Cascio (Italy), Andrei-Paul Corescu (Romania), Kerem Eksen (Turkey), Jannah Loontjens (The Netherlands), Jasim Mohamed (Sweden), Shumona Sinha (France) and Zoe Strachan (United Kingdom). It was moderated and hosted by Eric Metz, Suze van der Poll and Guido Snel.


The 2018 edition of the European Literature Night took place at two locations: Amsterdam, and the Cultural Capital of Europe 2018, Leeuwarden. On tuesday the dozen authors from all over Europe met in Leeuwarden, before reconvening on wednesday in Amsterdam, discussing the theme “What time is it?” It was an evening full of stories, poetry and cinema, once again moderated by Guido Snel, lecturer in European Studies at the University of Amsterdam.

Participating authors included Marius Burokas (Lithuania), Jan Carson (United Kingdom), Robert G. Elekes (Romania), Elmar Kuiper (Friesland, only in Leeuwarden), Kostas Gouliamos (Cyprus), Dana Grigorcea (Switzerland), Çiler İlhan (Turkey),Mustafa Kör (Flanders), Svealena Kutschke (Germany), Marije Langelaar(Netherlands), Giorgio Montefoschi (Italy) and Jaroslav Rudiš (Czech Republic).

photos by Jan Carson