This January marked the 31st Doha International Book Fair (DIBF), one of the oldest and largest international book fairs in the region and an important event in Qatar’s cultural scene. As a result of DIBF’s high demand, it continues to experience a good reputation and high popularity among participating Gulf, Arab, and foreign countries
Under the supervision of the Dar Al Kutub Al Qatariya, the DIBF was first launched in 1972. Since its inception, the exhibition was hosted every two years but starting from 2002 it has become an annual event. While many of the participants and contents are from Middle Eastern backgrounds, the fair also showcases an extensive collection of books from many parts of the world. Over the years, DIBF has gained international acclaim after it succeeded in attracting the largest and most influential publishing houses in the world. More than 20 publishing houses participated in the first exhibition, but this year 340 publishing houses were in attendance representing 34 countries. On the sidelines of the many exhibition booths, many cultural events are held throughout the space for guests to participate, like seminars, lectures, and workshops.
DIBF 2022 was held under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture in the State of Qatar and will be organized by the Qatar Cultural and Heritage Events Center, affiliated with the Ministry. This year’s exhibition was held under the slogan “Knowledge is Light” to reflect the human journey of exploration and learning. This year’s DIBF introduces the latest and most recent publications that reflect human creativity and reflective knowledge across all fields.
Since 2010, the DIBF has selected a country as the ‘Guest of Honor’ of the exhibition. So far, Russia, Turkey, Iran, Japan, Brazil, Germany, and France have all held the title. This year’s ‘Guest of Honor’ was the United States of America, where the US Embassy booth was designed by celebrated Arab-American designer Christina Khater. To celebrate this year’s slogan, Khater incorporates futuristic elements and design to illustrate how literacy and learning are key tools for innovation and enabling humanity to reach its highest potential.
Furthermore, not only was the QAIC culture delegation to Qatar present during the opening day of the book fair, but QAIC was also a participant at DIBF with our A2Q magazine being included among the many pieces of literature exhibited at the United States Pavilion. QAIC is honored to partner with the US Embassy in Qatar, the guest of honor at the 31st DIBF, and fortunate to take part in the fair’s many symposiums. QAIC’s Executive Director, Fatima Al-Dosari, spoke on the “Qatari-US Relations: Cultural Exchange to Build a Strategic Alliance” panel to shed light on QAIC’s mission, the Qatar-USA 2021 Year of Culture, and the many initiatives established in cooperation with Qatari cultural institutions that contribute to building bridges between the two cultures.
Missed DIBF this year? Fret not, our A2Q Digest is currently available soon in other select venues across Doha, including the Qatar National Library. However, you can always download the four digital issues of A2Q published in 2021 here!