India is guest of honour at Frankfurt Book Fair

16th March 2006, Comments 0 comments

16 March 2006, LEIPZIG - Under the motto "Today's India," the Frankfurt Book Fair is to host India from October 4-8, the fair's director said Thursday.

16 March 2006

LEIPZIG - Under the motto "Today's India," the Frankfurt Book Fair is to host India from October 4-8, the fair's director said Thursday.

Characterized as a modern, economically growing, and literarily multi-faceted land, India will be the first country to be represented twice at the famed book fair.

Speaking at the Leipzig Book Fair, the Frankfurt fair's director Juergen Boos said that the far-reaching changes in Indian society since its first appearance in 1986 moved the book fair to reinvite the country "that with a billion people has since become the world's largest democracy."

Boos added that India with its 24 official languages, more than 800 regional dialects and a highly diverse literature is a model of the integration of different cultures.

"This diversity we want to bring to Frankfurt," Boos said. "India is a country that in times of political and religious tensions shows that these tensions do not have to exist."

The India publishing industry which includes around 15,000 publishing houses with an annual production of 75,000 new works, is sending a delegation of 200 publishers and an estimated 30 authors.

Around 12 of these writers are already in Germany on a March literary tour that will include the Leipzig Book Fair and stops in Munich, Frankfurt and Hamburg.

In October, the Indian organization team the National Book Trust is planning additional exhibitions and events in Frankfurt, with talks already taking place with the city's various museums and cultural institutions, said Nuzhat Hassan, the trust's director.

Hassan added that among the features of the exhibitions will be an Indian bazaar as well as Indian cuisine. The National Book Trust is also providing financial support for the translation of around 150 Indian authors into German, French and Spanish, she said.

According to Indian Ambassador to Germany Meera Shankar, many international publishing houses use India for layout and print services.

Seeing the Frankfurt Book Fair as a bridge for cultural understanding, Shankar said: "Thomas Mann, Guenter Grass, Hermann Hesse and Goethe are very well-known in India."

"But we would like to learn more about the German literature of the present," she added.

DPA

Subject: German news

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