Building peace in the minds of men and women

World Book and Copyright Day

23 April

Why READING is more important NOW than ever!

More than ever, at a time where most of the schools around the world are closed and people are having to limit to spent their time outside, the power of books should be leveraged to combat isolation, reinforce ties between people, expand our horizons, while stimulating our minds and creativity. 

During the month of April and all year round, it is critical to take the time to read on your own or with your children. It is a time to celebrate the importance of reading, foster children's growth as readers and promote a lifelong love of literature and integration into the world of work.

Through reading and the celebration of World Book and Copyright Day, 23 April, we can open ourselves to others despite distance, and we can travel thanks to imagination. From April 1st to 23rd, UNESCO will share quotes, poems and messages to symbolize the power of books and encourage reading as much as possible. By creating a sense of community through the shared readings and the shared knowledge, readers around the world can connect and mutually help curb loneliness. 

In such circumstances, we invite students, teachers, readers from around the world as well as the whole book industry and library services to testify and express their love for reading. We encourage you to share this positive message with others through #StayAtHome and #WorldBookDay. 

The more people we can reach, the more people may be helped.

What is World Book and Copyright Day?

World Book and Copyright Day is a celebration to promote the enjoyment of books and reading. Each year, on 23 April, celebrations take place all over the world to recognize the scope of books - a link between the past and the future, a bridge between generations and across cultures. On this occasion, UNESCO and the international organizations representing the three major sectors of the book industry - publishers, booksellers and libraries, select the World Book Capital for a year to maintain, through its own initiatives, the impetus of the Day’s celebrations. 

23 April is a symbolic date in world literature. It is the date on which several prominent authors, William Shakespeare, Miguel Cervantes and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega all died. This date was a natural choice for UNESCO's General Conference, held in Paris in 1995, to pay a world-wide tribute to books and authors on this date, encouraging everyone to access books.

By championing books and copyright, UNESCO stands up for creativity, diversity and equal access to knowledge, with the work across the board – from the Creative Cities of Literature network to promoting literacy and mobile learning and advancing Open Access to scientific knowledge and educational resources. With the active involvement of all stakeholders: authors, publishers, teachers, librarians, public and private institutions, humanitarian NGOs and the mass media, and all those who feel motivated to work together in this world celebration of books and authors, World Book and Copyright Day has become a platform to rally together millions of people all around the world.