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Riyadh International Book Fair to kick off at King Saud University on Sept. 28  


Sep 8, 2023


Saudi Gazette report

RIYADH — The Literature, Publishing and Translation Commission, under the Ministry of Culture, is making elaborate preparations for the Riyadh International Book Fair 2023 at the commission’s new headquarters in the King Saud University campus. The book fair, with the theme of “Inspirational Destination,” will be held on an area spreading over 46,000 square meters from Sept. 28 and will run through until Oct. 7.

The book fair will be the largest in the Kingdom and the Arab world in terms of the diversity of the cultural programs and its activities catering to the tastes of people of all age groups.

More than one million book fans and readers are expected to visit the 10-day festival that would see wide participation of publishing houses from various parts of the world as well as cultural bodies and institutions, showcasing the latest publications and titles as well as rare and precious holdings including manuscripts and paintings.

There will be more than 200 cultural activities as part of the book fair and these include dialogue sessions, seminars, poetry evenings performed by elite classical and Nabati poets, workshops in various branches of knowledge, along with interaction of novelists and writers. The fair will feature various activities to educate children, enrich and refine their talent and abilities and their cognitive skills in a festive cultural atmosphere. There will also be Saudi and international theatrical performances, musical and lyrical concerts, as well as the Book Talk event, which hosts a group of influential thinkers and authors, in activities that reflect all elements and components of culture.

The fair will also have book signing platforms that host a group of writers to sign their latest publications and present them to their readers, in addition to a large area for children, and a number of supportive pavilions. There will be a corner for the Saudi authors for self-publishing, allowing the opportunity to display more than 400 titles of Saudi authors.

For the first time this year, the Riyadh Book Fair is organizing a poetry recitation competition for children, so that the children can enjoy the experience of learning poetic writing skills and recitation techniques, which enhances their linguistic skills and development of their personality.

The Literature, Publishing and Translation Commission will present awards to publishers during this year’s book fair. This covers five categories of excellence in publishing for children, translation, digital platforms, Saudi content and general category. This aims to consolidate the role of publishers in enriching cultural content, and the winners will be presented with a translation grant provided by the exhibition partner – Roshn Real Estate Development Company, a subsidiary of the Public Investment Fund.

The commission will organize an international publishers’ conference on Oct. 4 on the sidelines of the book fair. Several eminent Saudi and international speakers, including leaders of the publishing industry, individual publishers, authors, content makers and specialists will attend the event. The dialogue sessions of the conference will discuss various aspects of the book industry such as the transfer of professional experiences to startup companies, enhance opportunities for local publishers to enter in the field of copyright, enable the sale and exchange of rights and transfer of experiences, export Saudi culture to the world, and develop the publishing industry by adopting the highest quality standards and international best practices.

It is noteworthy that around 1,200 publishing houses, representing 32 countries, showcased their titles in the Riyadh Book Fair of 2022, held under the theme of “Cultural Chapters.


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