The conclusion of the Sharjah Book Fair: an extraordinary session …

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After the halls and lobbies of the Sharjah International Book Fair were transformed into a great theater in which the cultures and civilizations of peoples from different parts of the world gathered together, the Sharjah Book Authority recorded a new history in its path and great success in organizing the first international exhibition to be held on the ground in the world during the Corona period, presenting an exceptional session of all standards During the period 4-14 November at the Expo Center Sharjah, under the slogan “The world is reading from Sharjah”And during which, it gathered – over a period of 11 days – more than 1,024 Arab and foreign publishers in an environment that took all precautionary and preventive measures.

Scenes and tales

And in a renewed scene in the Emirate of Sharjah, which is keen on continuing the cultural act, and within the framework of the precautionary and preventive measures organized and coordinated represented in the need to pre-register and reduce the capacity of visitors and participants throughout the day to achieve physical distancing, monitor the numbers and gatherings of visitors between the exhibition halls and fully adhere to sterilization procedures, wearing masks, and messages Continuous awareness through all means and other measures, 382 thousand visitors got acquainted with millions of books, 80 thousand of which were new titles, distributed on the shelves of publishers’ platforms, and benefited from the creations of a group of Arab and foreign writers and writers who took visitors and followers of the event on knowledge and creative trips from a distance, Through the “Sharjah Read” platform, which was launched by the authority to host its various virtual events, as the number of views reached 63,500 during the days of the event.

Visitors and lovers of literature and thought had the opportunity to communicate and discuss with the Algerian novelist Wasseni Al-Araj, the Egyptian novelist Ahmed Mourad, and Dr. Mohsen Al-Ramli, director and author Lina Khoury, Kuwaiti writer Mishaal Hamad, as well as a group of foreign writers, thinkers and entrepreneurs, most notably the international lecturer in American self-development, Prince Ia, and the American author and entrepreneur Robert Kiyosaki, accompanied by the New Zealand writer Lang Lev, the British Ian Rankin, and the Canadian Najwa Thebian, as well as Canadian author Neil Basricha, Italian writer Elisabetta Dami, among others.

Procedures

The exhibition this year was characterized by an exceptional organization, during which the authority was keen to provide an ideal environment for its visitors, which included the highest standards of precautionary and preventive measures that are consistent with the efforts of the UAE to limit the spread of the Corona virus, as this year’s event was an example in the accuracy of the organization and receiving guests who dealt with the exhibition procedures and what It provided thermal scanners, registration procedures and platforms, which were located at all of its entrances.

It also worked on daily sterilization operations led by teams of experts and specialists that extended daily to all halls, lobbies and corridors of the exhibition over a period of 5 hours, and stressed the safety of publishers, and put in place a series of special procedures that achieve the necessary levels of physical distancing, and provided sterilization tools, face masks and other Prevention and safety supplies.

The exhibition was dedicated this year and due to the exceptional circumstances that prevented school students from visiting the exhibition, an ideal opportunity in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, which allowed schoolchildren to attend cultural and dialogue sessions and meet their favorite writers from their classrooms from a distance, through visual communication programs, which confirms the event’s keenness on Strengthening generations’ knowledge and cultures.

About this conclusion, the Chairman of the Sharjah Book Authority indicated Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, That the exhibition, by holding it this year, conveys a message to the world that culture is the main pillar from which Sharjah launches in its various visions and programs, and that the book is the first tool for building society, indicating that the exhibition was keen to restore life to the Arab and global cultural scene after what it witnessed from pauses and postponements. During the last period due to the Corona virus.

The head of the Sharjah Book Authority said: “With the end of each session of the exhibition, we start a new chapter of the story chapters, the story of creativity, culture and knowledge. This exhibition does not stop with the closing of its doors and the departure of its visitors, but rather it continues with its impact, and we will start working on a new vision and another year. And here we are before the 40th session, which completes the march of four decades of knowledge and creativity, and translates a long time of hard work that accompanied the great Sharjah cultural project, which was established by Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, a member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, since the eighties of the last century, and from here We can realize the status and importance of the exhibition as the most important and prominent weight in this process, which we are keen to support as much as possible for its prosperity and development. ”

Al-Amri pointed out that the success achieved by the special session this year is a success for all those who participated in it, worked hard and worked, which reflects the keenness of all visitors, publishers, writers and thinkers to meet the call of culture and creativity, explaining that this session and the visions of creators and publishers ‘books and visitors’ eagerness will remain immortal. In the memory of the Emirati, Arab and international cultural scene.


Official figures

The exhibition session this year witnessed great international attention, as it received official visits by ambassadors, consuls and representatives of a number of countries of the world, and Ahmed bin Rakkad Al-Ameri was received by them, as the exhibition witnessed the visit of Xavier Chatel, the Ambassador of France to the United Arab Emirates, and Francesca Elizabeth Mendes Escobar, the Mexican ambassador to the UAE, Henrik Lander Holm, the Swedish ambassador to the UAE, Nicolas Linear, the Italian ambassador to the country, Jean-Philippe Linto, the Canadian consul to the Emirates, Dr. Aman Puri, the consul general of the Republic of India in Dubai and the northern regions, and Masoud Ahmed Azizi , Consul General of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Dubai, Heideki Yabumoto, Deputy Consul of Japan in the Emirates, and Jimmy Iglesias Sanchez Cervera, Deputy Head of Mission for Political and Cultural Affairs at the Spanish Embassy in the UAE.

10th Publishers Conference

The exhibition hosted the tenth session of the Publishers Conference, which was organized over a period of 3 days, with the participation of 317 publishers and 33 speakers from different parts of the world, who discussed a number of challenges facing the publishing sector in the Arab world and the world in light of the spread of the Corona virus, the mechanism for publishers’ adaptation to it, and the impact of means Social networking and virtual events in enhancing communication between publishers and readers alike.

The 7th Library Conference

The exhibition witnessed the organization of the seventh session of the “Libraries Conference” (from a distance) over two days, in cooperation with the American Library Association, with the participation of 801 guests, from 51 Arab and foreign countries, including 11 countries participating for the first time, who participated in a series of sessions that discussed the current And the future of office work, education issues, and the impacts that the Coronavirus has had on the sector.

Translation grant

The authority announced that it received 1,014 applications to benefit from the grant of the Sharjah International Book Fair Fund for Translation and Rights, which are presented annually to publishers participating in the professional program organized by the fair before its launch every year during the month of November. Next, where the award comes with the aim of encouraging the Arab and international translation movement, by providing financial grants to publishers to help them translate their most prominent publications into other languages, the value of one grant ranges between 1500-4000 US dollars covering the cost of translating the book, in whole or in part.

Social media station

The exhibition had organized a series of virtual workshops specialized in skills and arts to present media and creative content within the activities of the “Social Media Station”, which displayed its entire program on the “Sharjah Read” platform for audiences of all age groups.

Book signatures by writers, thinkers and writers

During its activities, the exhibition organized a series of book signing parties for new publications, in which many writers and thinkers gave their audience copies signed in a scene that reflects the keenness of the owners of the beautiful word to release their publications from the exhibition.

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