The Bahrain International Book Fair commenced over a ten day span from Thursday, March 24, 2016 until Sunday, April 3, 2016 in the Bahraini capital Manama with the participation of 380 House publications locally, from the Arab world and internationally.
In a wonderful gesture from the exhibition’s management; it did not suffice books only but included cultural events as well embedding a beautiful atmosphere mixed with eastern culture. The exhibition covered art exhibits and documentary films and a number of lectures and literary seminars and concerts.
The number of visitors reached more than 100 thousand and one of the reasons for attracting such a large number of visitors is the exhibitions strategic location, which is in the center of The National Theatre building and Bahrain National Museum, this allows visitors an extended bridge of culture leaving an impact and beauty for the reader.
Going further using the poll conducted by Arab Woman Platform social accounts; asked question to the participating publishing houses in the Bahrain exhibition,
What are the most popular genres that attract readers in this day and age?
- Self-development books
- Religious and historical books
The representative of “Dar Azmana” publication Mr. Osama Hussein Abu Ta’a was that novels are favored by the younger generation, and historical books attract more from the adults generation. The representative of “Dar Kutab” publication Mr. Wissam Al Abdullah expressed that the novels are the best sellers. However “Dar Al Tanweer” publication had another opinion their representative Mr. Joe Rizk said that the demand on books is diverse in all fields, especially for books on reform, religion and philosophy. With a similar response by “Dar Al Saqi” publication their representative Mr. Issam Hamdan said that reader’s interests are diverse significantly and added that some countries favor a certain quality and kind of books differing from others in another country, he gave us a simple comparison and said that visitors that attended the Riyadh book fair, which was held recently favored self-development books significantly, while the same kind of books in the Bahrain exhibition did not have the same turnout.
The representative of “Dar Al Warraq” Publication and Distribution house Mr. Walid Khachmar said that the popularity of historical books is very low.
And last but not least “Dar Al Mada” publication House from Iraq representative Ali Al-Ghoul said that the novels occupies the first place and explained that this is most likely due to the fact that most Arabs are inherently afraid of confrontation and want to escape from the sorrowful state in the Arab world through immersing themselves in another world through novels, they serve as an escape.
The polls results:
Original Arabic article written by Eshraq Al Rawqi Bahrain
Translated by Mira Khatib