SIBF plays a vital role in inculcating a reading culture: Dr. Mona Al-Sharafi Tayim at SIBF 2022
Sharjah, November 10, 2022
Acclaimed Arab critic and academician Dr. Mona Al-Sharafi Tayim shed light on the preferences and changing tastes of new age readers in an insightful discussion at the 41st edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF).
At a session titled ‘New Century Reader’, the novelist and writer said young readers are looking for subjects that help improve their lives. “The emotional value of books are personified for the 21st century readers, who look at books as treasure houses of knowledge that can improve themselves. Simplified philosophies are in huge demand,” said the Arab critic.
Thanking SIBF for opening doors to writers and authors and encouraging them to produce more works, she said: “The annual SIBF has a huge role in inculcating the reading culture, particularly in the Arab world. Reading is a way of life that essentially begins at home. Readers can go on a world tour, passing through different cultures and traditions, just with alphabets and words. This union of writers and readers is a mental sport that lessens the burden and heaviness of life.”
“As much as good readers look for good books, a good book needs a good reader,” asserted the academician, adding: “The style and capabilities of a reader determines their creative mindset. Today, there are numerous publishers, but not all are necessarily meeting the demands of the different kinds of readers.”
New readers are more attached to digital versions, said Dr. Mona, who believes that although readers may shift entirely to on-screen in just a couple of years, the culture of reading is here to stay.
Speaking at the SIBF, the author also shared her concerns on the limited availability of reading content in Arabic, especially for those aged between 11 and 15. “We do have a lot of translated content, but I would like to see more original content that reflects our culture to cater to that age. It is the age where the young absorb everything around them and it is vital we build our strong values and culture within their minds,” she concluded.