Croatian Book Night 2021
On 23 April 2021, the National and University Library in Zagreb will host the 10th anniversary edition of Croatian Book Night, Croatia’s annual national programme aimed at the popularisation of reading and promotion of books. Apart from wishing to prompt a wider public debate on the social status of the book and the importance of values associated with it in the contemporary society, Croatian Book Night is also organised as a way of marking World Book and Copyright Day (23 April) and Croatian Book Day (22 April). Its framework this year will be the initiative of the Government of the Republic of Croatia as part of which the year 2021 has been declared the year of reading (Godina čitanja).
Always attempting to respond to current social circumstances, now so particularly marked by various global and our related intimate crises, the organisers of the 2021 Croatian Book Night decided to thematise through its programme the healing power of books. Turning to books in our search of the answers to questions that trouble us, we will more often than not find consolation, but will sometimes also be faced with unsettling messages, and occasionally even risk the questioning of our entire belief system.
The great Fyodor Mikhaylovich Dostoyevsky, the 200th anniversary of whose birth and 140th anniversary of whose death we are celebrating this year, left us this profound thought: When wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, almost all is lost. Can books help us, and how, to maintain our health as individuals and that of the entire society? What books would we “prescribe” for ourselves, and others, and why? Are there books that can be recommended as a cure for each age? What reading would we say can save us in the turbulent times that we live in today?
The National and University Library in Zagreb invites everyone interested in these issues to join the 2021 Croatian Book Night, on 23 April, by organising a programme spotlighting books and reading in the light of this year’s theme. Special care needs to be taken to ensure that all events be brought in line with the anti-COVID-19 measures that will then be in force and depending on whose variability all events have to be prepared so that they may be held both physically and online.
Programme registration will be possible from 8 March to 9 April 2021 on the Croatian Book Night website.
The organisers of the Croatian Book Night programme are the Publishers and Booksellers Association of the Croatian Chamber of Economy, National and University Library in Zagreb, Zagreb City Libraries, Publishers’ Reprographic Rights Association – ZANA (Udruga za zaštitu prava nakladnika), books-and-culture-oriented web portal Moderna vremena, Knjižni blok – Inicijativa za knjigu pro-book association and the Croatian Association of School Librarians, and its organisation is supported by the Croatian Ministry of Culture and Media, Croatian Chamber of Economy and City of Zagreb.