The Campus Book Festival is back for its fifth edition

The Campus Book Festival will be held on 21, 22 and 23 March, kicking off daily at 9am with back-to-back activities planned until 4pm

 The National Book Council and Għaqda tal-Malti – Università are proud to present the fifth edition of the Campus Book Festival, which will be held on 21, 22 and 23 March, kicking off daily at 9 am with back-to-back activities planned until 4pm. On Friday the activities will continue until late in the evening.

The purpose of the festival is to promote literature across the board while, at the same time, giving publishers and book distributors a space in which they can sell and promote their publications with a mature audience, such as university students. A vast programme of activities will be put up during the festival, ranging from workshops and films related to literature, to readings and interviews with authors, painters and illustrators – as well as language discussions, guided tours around the University Library, live music and a number of collaborations with other organisations.

The special guest this year is Jasmin B. Frelih, the Slovenian author whose novel Na/Pol (In/Half) earned him the European Prize for Literature in 2016. He will be joining us on Campus for special events scheduled on each of the three days, with a creative writing workshop on 21 March, a discussion with Maltese writer and poet Immanuel Mifsud on Slovenian literature on 22 March, and a interview with Noel Tanti on 23 March. On Friday afternoon, Inizjamed will be contributing an Open Mic session featuring Frelih.

The festival will close on Friday night with live music by Cryptic Street and Fuzzhoneys.

The planned activities are held by HoASA and Marisa Attard, Dr Bernard Micallef and Dr Olvin Vella, in collaboration with the University Library, Glen Calleja along with the Department of Maltese within G.F. Abela Junior College, DESA, Jesmond Vassallo, Noah Fabri, Tradizzjoni Orali – Dipartiment tal-Malti, l-Università, Colette Sciberras, Fattima Mahdi, Moritz Sommer, BDL, Immanuel Mifsud, Inizjamed, Clare Azzopardi and Leanne Ellul, Salvu Catania and Gloria Lucia Laurente, Noel Tanti, Pjattaforma, Alfred and Gabriel Buttigieg, Michael Zammit and Horizons.

Opening times and dates are: Wednesday 21 March and Thursday 22 9am–4pm; Friday 23 March 9am–late. The Festival is open to all, free of charge.


The Festival will take place on 21 March - 23 March
The Festival will take place on 21 March - 23 March

9am Exhibition and talk // Marisa Attard and HoASA

Artist and illustrator Marisa Attard joins HoASA to exhibit a selection of her works showing curious elements, humour and more serious representations.

10am Creative writing workshop // Jasmin B. Frelih

Jasmin B. Frelih, winner of the European Prize for Literature and special guest of the Festival, will hold a workshop on creative writing.

11am We’re off to the Melitensia! // Dr Bernard Micallef and Dr Olvin Vella

 Join us for a tour-with-a-difference of the University Library. We will access the closed area of the Melitensia that’s normally not open to the public!  

11am The art of bookbinding // Glen Calleja

The workshop focuses on traditional bookbinding and how this art can be used to make new books. Glen will take us through the process, from initial idea to the final product, explaining the tools and methods used for book design.

12pm DESAthlon // DESA

A quiz organised by DESA where participants can have a sneak peak into  literature by guessing which book the quote in the balloon is taken from… running against time!

1pm Blake and printmaking // Jesmond Vassallo

Visual artist Jesmond Vassallo will give a presentation about William Blake’s art of printmaking. The presentation will include visual footage and a discussion about the techniques used by the well-known artist.

2pm The Psychiatrist Never Called Back // Noah Fabri

Noah Fabri is 18 years old. He plays guitar and studies anthropology. He loves The Beatles, David Bowie, and folk and jazz music. He loves reading. He’s a time waster. He could be an anarchist but he’s not sure yet!

3 pm Rakkont Haj // Tradizzjoni Orali

A presentation about the idea behind the project Rakkont Ħaj - Tifkiriet tal-Imqabbin and the process whereby the oral tradition of those hailing from Mqabba is being preserved. The event involves storytelling by those who remember the village, its historical events and village trades, at a time when  dialect was spoken more.



9am Buddha, Aristotle, and Science // Colette Sciberras

Dr Colette Sciberras talks about the development of western and eastern notions of causality and explores how these developments are tied with religious beliefs.

10 am Love Don’t Come Easy // Fattima Mahdi

The way we use Facebook, Tinder and Snapchat for communicating is ushering a new language of love. Fattima Mahdi’s book Love Don’t Come Easy is all about how technology has changed us and has affected our modern romantic relationships.

11 am From Poetry to Botany: Giovan Francesco Buonamico // Dr Bernard Micallef.

Dr Bernard Micallef talks about Giovan Francesco Buonamico, a 17th Century intellectural who personified the baroque temperament of his time, the movement that lives beyond confines.

12pm Scepticism: Birthmark of German Idealism // Moritz Sommer

Moritz Sommer, who is currently translating Gottlob Schulze’s work Aenesidemus to English, will talk about this book and the role it played in the German idealist movement.

1pm Translating German Idealist Philosophy into English // Moritz Sommer

A reading and examination of Schulze’s critique in Aenesidemus and Fichte’s counter arguments (Review of Aenesidemus, 1794) on Kant’s principle of conscience in Reinhold’s Elementary Philosophy (1790).

2pm German Philosophy // Sean Curran & Megan Hynes

Sean Curran and Megan Hynes will present philosophical papers on strands of 18th and 19th Century German philosophy. Curran and Hynes are students at the Department of Philosophy at the National University of Ireland in Galway. A discussion will follow, with the participation of Moritz Sommer.

3pm The literature of Yugoslavia // A discussion between Immanuel Mifsud and Jasmin B. Frelih

Renowned Maltese author Immanuel Mifsud talks to Slovenian writer Jasmin B. Frelih about the literature of Yugoslavia and Slovenia. Mifsud himself had a poetry collection translated into the Slovenian, and one of his novels will also be similarly translated.



9am Blake and printmaking // Jesmond Vassallo

Visual artist Jesmond Vassallo will make a presentation about William Blake’s art of printmaking. The presentation will include visual footage and a discussion about the well-known artist’s techniques.

10am Battle of the Books: Poetry verse vs Prose // DESA

A talk about the nature of poetry and prose that will discuss the differences between these two genres and their place in contemporary literature.

11am Poetic films // Inizjamed and Valletta 2018

A screening of two poetic films: Relazzjoni by Lyanne Mifsud and Nicky Aquilina, based on a poem by Maria Grech Ganado and Fuq Għoljiet Dingli produced by Trevor Borg, based on a poem by Victor Fenech.

12pm Diskussjoni bejn tnejn // Clare Azzopardi and Leanne Ellul

The authors of Frejp and Gramma will discuss books for young adults and will also read excerpts from their own work. What does a book for young adults do? Which titles are their favourites? What is the situation in Malta when compared to foreign markets?

1pm Frankenstein in cinema // Salvu Catania and Gloria Lauri Lucente

Join us for a history and cinema session. We will be watching a film by J. Searly Dawley based on Mary Shelley’s famous novel Frankenstein. The screening will be followed by a discussion between Dr Saviour Catania and Prof Gloria Lauri Lucente on the film’s cinematography and the impact that this figure had on the collective imaginary.

2pm Tħoss – Philosphy in Maltese // Michael Zammit

Michael Zammit talks about the relationship between the meaning of a word and its sound, specifically when it comes to poetry.

3pm Launch: The translation of Metamorphosis // Pjattaforma

Book launch of the translation of Ovid’s Metamorphosis, from Latin to Maltese, by Michael Zammit. This project was financed by the Malta Book Fund.

3.45pm The Maltese Cinderella and the Women's Storytelling Tradition // Dr. Veronica Veen

A talk on the socio-cultural importance of fairytales within their social, ‘living’ context, with an eye on Malta in particular. What are fairytales traditionally all about? 

4.30pm Dik il-Qtajra // John Grech interviews Alfred and Gabriel Buttigieg

Alfred and Gabriel Buttigieg, father and son, author and artist. Come meet both of them during a discussion about the controversial work Dik il-Qtajra – the father’s book, and the son’s art interpretation. Excerpts from the text will be read out by Stephen Mintoff.

5.30 pm Interview with Jasmin B. Frelih // Noel Tanti

Noel Tanti interviews writer Jasmin B. Frelih about his passion for writing, his writing process, what he likes to write about, as well as the European Prize for Literature.

6.30 pm Launch of the book Oasi by John P. Portelli // Horizons

John P. Portelli is the author of a collection of sketches and short stories based on existential encounters of joy and tragedy, with characters who find themselves in dilemmas that give insight into the complexity of life in Malta and beyond.

7pm Palk Ħieles // Inizjamed

Join us for another night in the series “Palk Hieles”. Feel free to read, tell a story, play or act out a scene that you’ve learned well. With guest Jasmin B. Frelih.

8pm Live music // Cryptic Street and Fuzzhoneys

An evening of young music with alternative female post-punk band Cryptic Street who will play an acoustic set from new album Titty Monster inspired by the movement Riot Grrl and guitar and drum duo Fuzzhoneys who will play garage rock intertwined with elements of blues.