The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature has unveiled its agenda and speaker lineup for its 16th edition, scheduled to take place from January 31 to February 6, 2024, at the Intercontinental, Dubai Festival City. This renowned event, the region’s largest celebration of stories and ideas, promises new events and experiences featuring some of the world’s foremost writers, creators, and thought leaders.
Among the distinguished speakers are Claudia Rankine, an accomplished American poet, essayist, and playwright; Silicon Valley entrepreneur Tony Fadell, known as the father of the iPod and founder of Nest; BookTok sensations Curtis Sittenfeld and Rebecca Yarros, making their regional debut; award-winning translator Anton Hur; Francesca Cartier Brickell, a direct descendant of the Cartier family and author of The Cartiers; novelist Miral Al-Tahawy; poet Ahmed Bakheet; sports role model Zahra Lari, the first figure skater for the UAE and the region to compete globally; and others.
Returning to the LitFest stage are notable figures such as behavioral expert Thomas Erikson, Lucy Hawking, journalist and novelist, Toshikazu Kawaguchi, renowned Japanese author, Saud Alsanousi, International Prize for Arabic Fiction winner, and Dana Dajani, an award-winning Palestinian writer and performer.
The festival will offer four distinct experiences for attendees. LitFest After Hours ensures the festivities continue into the night with performances, games, activities, and food from Thursday to Sunday. Discovery Talks, a series of free-to-attend lectures, will provide engaging perspectives on topics ranging from the Spiderverse to Chinese mythology to Arabic language and artificial intelligence. Additionally, LitFest Families will feature top children’s storytellers and illustrators from the UAE and around the world, offering a diverse weekend of activities catering to young book enthusiasts, covering themes from dragons and superheroes to teen spies and poetry.