Russia - guest of honour at Frankfurt book fair

For the first time in the 55-year history of the world's largest book fair in Frankfurt, Russia will occupy its central area, the fair's deputy director Holger Ehling told journalists on Friday. Ehling is taking part in the Nevsky Book Forum in St Petersburg.

"The fact that Russia will occupy the central area at the exhibition is important both for the fair and for Russia," he emphasised. "It will be a great chance for Russian publishers to introduce their products to the foreign book market, to German readers," he pointed out.

On the whole, the fair that will take place on October 8-13, 2003, will present about 6,500 stands with almost 60,000 participants from 110 countries, Ehling said.

Products of Russian publishers, as well as the official exposition "Russia: New Pages" will take two pavilions with a total area of 5,000 square meters.

Over 100 Russian publishing houses will take part in the fair. The new items will include belles-lettres, children's, philosophic, popular-science and reference books. A significant area will be given to publishing programmes dedicated to St Petersburg and its writers.

During its work, the Frankfurt fair will hold about a thousand of events devoted to Russia, such as discussions of the modern state of Russian literature process, and of most topical subjects for the world literature community.

The Russian delegation will include over 100 outstanding writers presenting all genres and styles of modern literature, among them Andrei Bitov, Boris Akunin, Viktor Pelevin, Nina Sadur, Boris Strugatsky, Tatiana Tolstaya, Lyudmila Ulitskaya. During the exhibition they will arrange presentations, literature readings and meetings with readers.

Apart from various publishing products, Russia will present in Frankfurt and other German cities a broad concert and exhibition programme. It will include exhibitions "The Gold of Amazons", "Novgorod Veliky. Ancient Russian Free Republic in 11th-16th centuries" and "Works of Communism Art".

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