World Book and Copyright Day is celebrated on 23 April. The celebration provides an occasion to reflect on the importance of reading – a fundamental activity for all that must be promoted and supported from childhood that stimulates the imagination of children and helps them to develop their skills and abilities.
Multiple initiatives have been organised to mark the occasion: meetings, conferences, competitions and many other opportunities for exchange that offer useful ideas to explore the topic and promote strategies to encourage reading, especially among younger people. The 1989 UN Convention on the Rights of the Child also underlines the fundamental importance of the issue for young people: according to Article 17(c), States Parties shall encourage the production and dissemination of children's books. Article 31 of the Convention should also be mentioned, which recognises the right of children and adolescents to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to their age and to participate freely in cultural and artistic life.
The rich calendar of events that celebrate World Book and Copyright Day includes Il Maggio dei Libri, a national campaign conceived by the Centre for Books and Reading that in the period leading up to 31 May invites book lovers to organise in-person and online initiatives inspired by the institutional theme ContemporaneaMente. Read to understand. The campaign will start on 23 April in Ivrea, the Italian Book Capital 2022 (at Teatro Giacosa and streamed on the respective sites and Facebook pages of Il Maggio dei Libri and the Centre for Books and Reading). The campaign website,www.ilmaggiodeilibri.it, tells the story of the event. "Since 23 April 1996 UNESCO has officially celebrated World Book and Copyright Day: on this date in 1616 three foundational authors died: Miguel de Cervantes, William Shakespeare and Garcilaso de la Vega. In Spain, where this anniversary has been celebrated since the early twentieth century, the passion for books has over the years been joined to a sweeter tradition: on the Day of Books and Roses custom dictates that women receive roses as a gift and that all booksellers offer a flower for each book purchased".
The day is also marked by two further initiatives of the Centre for Books and Reading aimed specifically at children and young people: "When children teach us", a competition of ideas created by Eraldo Affiniti to encourage reading among younger people; and the BookTuberPrize 2022, a national prize for ideas aimed at young people aged 15 to 25 and promoted in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation - General Directorate for public and cultural diplomacy.
The competition, now in its third edition, is aimed at Italian secondary school students in Italy and abroad, who must send their eligible submissions by 26 April 2022. Further information is available in the dedicated news section.
The BookTuberPrize 2022 aims not only to encourage the exchange and circulation of books but also to promote a careful and conscious reading that develops critical thinking through the creation of reviews. There is still time to submit applications before the 2 May 2022 deadline. Further information is available in the dedicated news section.
To further explore the day's theme, we suggest the following study materials selected by the Biblioteca Innocenti Library A.C. Moro, which are useful for all those who deal with childhood and adolescence on one level or another (institutional representatives, teachers, educators, social workers, university students, etc.):
- bibliographic research on books for children and young people (a selection of texts that can be used by those who work with children and young people to address various issues, such as children's rights, gender issues, bullying, etc.);
- bibliographic research on books that discuss literature for children and young people;
- bibliographic research on reading-related education and the promotion of reading; bibliography edited by the Library on the occasion of the National Day for the Promotion of Reading, 24 March 2022.
Other materials and updates are available on this site on the themes of Education, accessible from the navigation menu "Themes".