Cairo International Book Fair kicks off on January 26 with holograms and VR exhibit


The 53rd Cairo International Book Fair will kick off in the Egyptian capital on Jan. 26 and end on Feb. 7, the country’s culture minister said at a press conference on Monday.

Egypt’s Identity – Culture and the Question of the Future is the theme of the highly anticipated literary festival attended by millions of people every year.

The fair usually takes place during the Egyptian school’s winter break so that its target population, children and young adults, have time to attend, although last year it was postponed to June due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Over 1,000 publishers from over 50 countries are expected.

Each year, a country is chosen as the main guest, and its famous authors and works are honored by the fair. Greece was chosen this year.

Last year’s guest of honor was Spain and the country’s ambassador attended the opening.

This year, the fair will be launched by Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly and will take place in Cairo’s largest exhibition hall, the 40,000 square meter Egyptian International Exhibition Center.

Technology will be one of the main themes, said Culture Minister Ines Abdel Dayem, who also announced that the General Egyptian Book Organization will this year, for the first time, offer electronic versions of some of the titles , including 16-16 volume Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt by the eminent Egyptologist Selim Hassan.

The fair is normally split in two, with one part showcasing adult books and another showing children’s material.

Two eminent writers are chosen each year as the “personalities” of the fair, one for each section.

This year, the Egyptian short story virtuoso Yahya Haqqi (1905-1992) is the winner of the adult edition. Haqqi will be projected using hologram technology in one of the interactive exhibits, marking the first use of this type of technology at the festival.

Meanwhile, Egyptian writer Abdel Tawab Youssef will be the children’s personality and one of his short stories has been adapted into a film that will be shown in virtual reality.

In addition to a number of awards presented for various honors each year, the event will mark the launch of a new award, that given to the best participating publisher.

The festival prize money total has been increased from EGP 10,000 ($636) to EGP 40,000.

Tickets for the show cost EGP 5 and must be booked online prior to the event for Covid-19 security reasons.

More information is at cairobookfair.gebo.gov.eg

Watch a video of the 52nd Cairo International Book Fair:

Updated: January 18, 2022, 1:02 p.m.

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