SHARJAH, 31st October, 2022 (WAM) — The highly anticipated 41st edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) kicks off tomorrow (Wednesday) under the slogan ‘Spread the Word’ and will run until 13th November at the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF). ‘Sharjah Exhibition.
The 12-day cultural extravaganza celebrates world cultures by hosting a galaxy of distinguished authors, intellectuals, publishers, artists and creatives from 95 countries, and celebrates Italy as the guest of honor of the 2022 edition.
Organized by the Sharjah Book Authority (SBA), the International Book Fair allows visitors to meet Booker Prize winners, international screenwriters and artists, in addition to exploring countries around the world through the publishers’ pavilions, cooking station and a varied program of activities that include musical performances, plays and theatrical performances.
This year, SIBF 2022 welcomes 2,213 publishers, including 1,298 from the Arab region and 915 from around the world.
The 41st edition will feature 123 impressive theatrical performances as well as musicals led by 22 artists and performers from eight countries, including six new programs and more than 30 activities led by renowned Arab and international conductors.
Through the SIBF 2022 slogan “Spread the Word”, the Fair conveys the message: “Words can build the future and change realities, so be friends and stay close to them”. The 41st edition will present 1.5 million titles.
As part of this year’s Book Fair cultural program, the SIBF will host 150 distinguished authors, intellectuals and creatives who will lead 1,500 activities and sessions, including 200 activities including workshops, lectures and seminars.
For children, SIBF 2022 will organize 623 activities, shows and workshops led by 45 professionals and experts from 14 countries, including “Toy Tale”, an exciting musical that explores the impact of children’s addiction to video games.
During this time, comic book enthusiasts and amateurs will have the opportunity to take part in no less than 188 activities and workshops covering 16 themes, in addition to four traveling shows.
Activities and workshops cover topics as varied as NFTs, character creation, and character chunks.
Among Arab publishers, the United Arab Emirates comes first, followed by Egypt and Lebanon.
At the international level, India, the United Kingdom and Italy occupy the first places and will present their titles on an area of 18,000 m² alongside Cuba, Costa Rica, Liberia, the Philippines, Ireland , Malta, Mali, Jamaica, Iceland and Hungary, which are participating for the first time in the SIBF, among others.
Sharjah International Library Conference and National Library Summit
In partnership with the American Library Association, the SBA will host the second edition of the two-day National Library Summit at the Sharjah Expo Center on November 6-7, which will bring together delegates from 30 countries.
The 9th Sharjah International Library Conference (SILC), taking place November 8-10, will bring together an international group of librarians and experts representing various libraries in the United States and countries around the world.
Arab and international guests
Prominent literary figures in the UAE include author and poet the President of the Emirates Writers Union, Sultan Al Amimi; the poet Khulood Al Mualla and the poet and writer Ibrahim Al Hashemi. They will join their counterparts from the Arab region including the winner of the 2022 International Prize for Arabic Fiction (IPAF), the Libyan novelist Mohamed Alnaas; the poet and former Moroccan Minister of Culture and Communication, Mohamed Al-Ash’ari; the poet Hisham Algakh; author Ahmed Mourad; the Egyptian mental health and bioenergy consultant, Dr. Ahmed Emara; Egyptian screenwriter Hani Sarhan; the Kuwaiti poet Mohammed Jarallah Al-Sahli and the Algerian scholar and writer Boumediene Belkebir.
A galaxy of literary stalwarts from around the world will also headline SIBF 2022. Prominent names include Deepak Chopra, the New York Times bestselling author of Abundance: The Inner Path to Wealth and Metahuman: Unleashing Your Infinite Potential; Lincoln Pierce, cartoonist/writer and best-selling author of the hilarious Big Nate book series; Rupi Kaur, Canadian poet, illustrator, photographer and author; and Pico Iyer, British-born essayist and novelist.
Indian author and short story writer and winner of the 2022 International Booker Prize, Geetanjali Shree; the American author of many critically acclaimed thrillers, DJ Palmer, including The New Husband and My Wife is Missing; and Australian fashion illustrator who has written and illustrated 16 bestselling books, Megan Hess, will also be at SIBF this year.
Celebrating the legacy of Mahmoud Darwish
The 41st edition will showcase the iconic works and celebrate the lyrical, haunting and creative legacy of Palestine’s most eminent poet, Mahmoud Darwish, in a dedicated pavilion throughout the 12-day fair.
The pavilion will be managed by the Mahmoud Darwish Foundation, which is participating in the SIBF for the first time.
New at SIBF 2022
The 41st edition will launch six new programs, including a three-day Thriller Festival from November 8-10 to offer writers specializing in the thriller and crime genres the opportunity to showcase their works and participate in workshops, tables rounds and signing sessions. The event is organized in partnership with ThrillerFest in New York.
The Book Fair will also organize the Young Emirati Writers Program, which is a platform that helps aspiring writers develop and advance their skills through discussion sessions, poetry nights, and more.
Responding to public demand, the SIBF is running a series of workshops for adults this year covering a variety of topics, including photography, crafts, creative writing and acting.
For the first time at the SIBF Theatre, London Apartment – the critically acclaimed Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) social satire written by Issa Ahmad and directed by Mosa Arty, will be staged. The cast of the play includes Juma Ali, Mays Gumir, Shehab Johar, Shahad Salman and Mishal Al Eidan.
30 culinary activities throughout the Book Fair will be led by eminent chefs, including Dr. Nourhan Kandil and Sally Fouad from Egypt; Cristina Bowerman, Alessandro Miceli, Damiano Carrar and Luca Manfe from Italy; Indian Chief Vicky Ratnani and Vindex Tengker from Indonesia.
Social Media Corner
A total of 30 workshops at SIBF’s popular social media station, presented by 10 experts from seven countries, will cover topics such as social media strategies, creative content, and more.
For the first time in its history, the SIBF will celebrate the literary works of a distinguished group of authors and intellectuals at the “Authors of the Diaspora” pavilion. Authors featured here include Professor Habib Abdulrab Sarori, a Yemeni AI expert from the Department of Mathematics and Software Engineering at the University of Rouen Normandy, France.
The Book Fair will also introduce visitors to the diversity and richness of the African continent through the Afro-Arab cultural program, which brings together 17 eminent guests from Mali, Senegal and Nigeria in six activities, in addition to a special cultural program of the Philippines that reflects the unique cultural traditions, arts and music of the island nation.
Translated by: Mervat Mahmoud.
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Launch of the SIBF 2022 on Wednesday under the theme “Pass the word”