The International Book Fair (FIL) will return this November to the streets of Guadalajara, a year after the coronavirus pandemic forced the previous edition, number 34, to be held virtually. The convention, one of the most important cultural events on the continent, announced this Monday that it will return with guests of honor. From November 27 to December 5, its 255 exhibitors will be attended by more than 600 narrators from 47 countries: the emblematic Nicaraguan writer, now exiled in Costa Rica, Sergio Ramírez; Laura Restrepo, author of Delirium (Santillana, 2004), considered one of the best books of Colombian literature of the 20th century; Camila Sosa, whose novel The evil ones (Tusquets, 2019), about the life of a group of transvestites at the beginning of the century in Argentina, swept bookstores last year; John Boyne, who rose to world fame with The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (2006); Margo Glantz; Carmen Aristegui; Claudia Piñeiro; Enrique Krauze or Juan Gabriel Vásquez, among many others.
This edition will work with a hybrid format, although 70% of the activities will be face-to-face. Authors such as Cristina Rivera Garza, Paul Auster, Etgar Keret, Muriel Barbery, Ken Follet, Isabel Allende, Jonathan Franzen and Amin Maalouf will also participate in the virtual events. The guest of honor this year will be Peru, which was not without controversy when announcing its representatives: in denouncing the notable absences of writers such as Katya Adaui, Karina Pacheco or Gabriela Wiener, nine authors announced last September that they would not attend FIL for the changes that the Government of Pedro Castillo made to the list of intellectuals chosen to represent the Andean country.
“With the endorsement of the Specialized Board of Health of the Government of the State of Jalisco and the advice of the Health Situation Room for Covid-19 of the University of Guadalajara and the Civil Hospital of Guadalajara, the Guadalajara International Book Fair will return in face-to-face format at Expo Guadalajara, with some adjustments, changes and protocols to guarantee the safety and health of its visitors, participants, professionals and exhibitors ”, the organization has expressed in a statement. Among the new measures, there is the mandatory use of the mask, two-way corridors to avoid crowds, or two separate visiting shifts: from nine in the morning to two in the afternoon and from four in the afternoon to nine at night. The two hours between time slots will be used to disinfect the spaces.
In its desire to also incorporate relevant personalities from the world of science or politics, in addition to arts and culture, FIL has invited the famous ethologist Jane Goodall; Sasha Sagan, the daughter of astronomer Carl Sagan and writer Ann Druyan; the former Spanish president José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero; Chandran Kukathas or Catalina Botero. As was already announced last August, the FIL Prize for Literature 2021 – awarded with 150,000 dollars, about 130,000 euros – will go to the Chilean Diamela Eltit, in recognition of the set of a work that, according to the representative of the jury, Lorena Amaro, “ it transcends literary conventions ”and“ renews the reflection on literature, language and power at the turn of the century ”. In addition, the Mexican Margo Glantz will obtain the Medal Carlos Fuentes.
Tickets can be obtained for the first time online and will be priced at 25 pesos for adults and 20 pesos (around one euro) for children, students, teachers with a credential, the elderly and people with disabilities.
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