Frankfurt Book Fair counted more than 70,000 visitors

Frankfurt Book Fair counted more than 70,000 visitors
Frankfurt Book Fair counted more than 70,000 visitors

More than 70,000 visitors came to the Frankfurt Book Fair this year, including around 36,000 trade visitors from 105 countries. This was announced by the organizers at the end of the industry meeting in Frankfurt. In addition, around 130,000 users took advantage of the digital offers.

After the online edition in the Corona year 2020, the trade fair was again present and with an audience. The host country was Canada, and the entire site was 3G (vaccinated, recovered or tested). Even if the organizers were satisfied, the numbers naturally remained far behind the pre-Corona times. More than 300,000 people streamed onto the site in 2019.

“The 73rd Frankfurt Book Fair marks a new beginning after 18 months and, in view of the worldwide travel restrictions, has far exceeded our expectations,” said book fair boss Jürgen Boos. This shows how resilient and creative the industry is. “You could literally feel the joy of seeing you again in the halls.”

The event was shaped again this year by the debate about the limits of freedom of expression. Initially, Jasmina Kuhnke (“Black Heart”) canceled her presence at the fair due to the presence of the right-wing Junge Europa publishing house. Other authors followed later. Meanwhile, the fair had justified its decision to allow right-wing publishers with freedom of expression and freedom of publication. The presence of new right-wing publishers had already led to protests in 2017.

“I think it’s bad and I’m also worried, really worried, when I read that women authors are afraid to go to Frankfurt because they could meet right-wing publishers and authors here,” said Frankfurt’s Mayor Peter Feldmann (SPD) during his welcoming address at the Peace Prize in the Paulskirche on Sunday. Karin Schmidt-Friderichs, head of the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels, said: It has been shown “that there are social debates that we must and will continue to intensively – such as those on combating racism or on dealing with extreme political positions in our society and at book fairs “.

Boos said on Sunday that he regretted the authors’ cancellation. The votes would have been missing. “With their presence they would have set an example, like Salman Rushdie or Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, for example, have done in the past,” he said. International book fairs thrived on the diversity of opinions and content as well as on the exchange on equal terms.

He emphasized: “The freedom of the word is not negotiable for us.” Freedom of expression should not be restricted beyond the limits drawn by the state. The maximum security must be guaranteed, “so that each and every individual can feel free and safe to visit the fair”. As the organizer “we strongly oppose the instrumentalization of our events”.


Frankfurt Book Fair counted visitors

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