I think some readers of this blog still remember the sorry incidents that happened during last year’s Riyadh International Book Fair. You can find some of the posts I have written on the occasion on the sidebar. The 2nd edition of RIBF will open on Tuesday at the same location: Riyadh Exhibitions Center in the northern area of the capital, and it will remain open until March 9.
During a press conference last week, Abdul-Aziz al-Sabeel, deputy minister of information for cultural affairs, announced there will be some changes from regarding the entrance arrangements. There will not be any days for families only. The book fair will be open to everybody, men and women, except for the evening period of three days which will be only open to men. I have to admit that such change is unusual and was not expected, not from my part anyway. The new arrangement was the fruit of a deal between the ministry and the Committee for Promoting of Virtue and Prevention of Vince, al-Sabeel said. “There is going to be a large number of CPVPV members present in the fair carrying their ID cards,” he added.
Similar to last year, there will be a number of cultural events on the sidelines of RIBF. However, as I can see from the program, the organizers have decided to avoid the controversies that occurred last year by choosing a certain kind of topics and speakers. Even though the program is not as interesting as last year’s, I will be attending some events. Here is a list of the evens I intend to attend:
– The Arabic Culture and the Ottoman State. 28/2/07 @ 18:15
– Electronic Publishing: a Battle with Paper. 28/2/07 @ 20:00
– Between Culture and Politics. 2/3/07 @ 18:15
– Intellectual Property. 2/3/07 @ 20:00
– Human Rights: a Dialogue from a Distance. 4/3/07 @ 18:15
– Western Books on Islam after September 11. 5/3/07 @ 20:00
– The Road to the Kingdom: Readings in Travel Books. 6/3/07 @ 20:00
– The Arab World and Reading. 7/3/07 @ 20:00
– Book Covers. 8/3/07 @ 18:15
I hope it would be a good assortment of brain food, and hey, if you are going to be there, let’s meet and talk! You know how do I look like, so if you see me you can just stop by and say hi. Actually, I would love to see some bloggers there, namely MagicKingdom, Riyadhawi, Al Failsoof, and a bunch of others. I think it would be really nice :-)