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Welcome to 5th Jozi Book Fair 2013!

25 - 26 October 2013,

Museum Africa, Newtown, Johannesburg

Reading the Word and the World: the Role of Libraries

Dear Friends 
Registration for participation in Khanya College’s 5thAnnual Jozi Book Fair is now open. The Fair will take place from 25 - 26 October 2013 at Museum Africa, in Newtown, Johannesburg.
We call on authors, self-publishers, small publishers, indigenous-language publishers, libraries, literacy and literary organisations, children, youth, adults and the general public to participate in the Fair.
The Jozi Book Fair (JBF) is the Fair for everyone: readers, writers and small publishers alike.

We welcome you to exhibit your written work and materials and to take part in the JBF Programme by hosting or attending the various activities at the Fair. These activities include roundtable discussions and informal conversations, seminars, book launches, readings, training workshops as well as screenings related to books . The Jozi Book Fair is also a space to network and meet other people interested in the world of reading, writing and books!


To read more about the Jozi Book Fair click here.

Jozi Book Fair 2013: A focus on the role of libraries

The theme of this year’s annual Book Fair and its related programmes is: ‘Reading the Word and the World: the Role of Libraries’. As part of the focus on libraries the Book Fair will also include a Conference on the Role of Libraries.

The key to developing a strong reading and writing culture on a broad and consistent basis, rests with libraries. Historically, libraries collect, organise, protect and preserve knowledge and information and in doing so, makes it available to individuals and communities. Knowledge and information is vital to all human beings, it drives development and influences daily living, particularly in the information-driven 21st century.

In South Africa, however, despite almost 20 years of democracy, many schools and communities throughout the country still do not have access to libraries. This lack of access to libraries continues to be linked to inequalities in colour, education and social class. As a result, there are only a few public libraries in rural areas and black townships and the majority of township schools still do not have functioning libraries. This is expressed in the national education crisis, high unemployment coupled with poor levels of skills, and the poor quality and standard of living of the majority of people in the country. 

Through various activities, the Book Fair will reflect on the historical importance of libraries, the state of libraries within schools and communities in South Africa and the challenges faced by librarians. The Fair will also examine ways to strengthen and develop access to library services and strategies for building a reading culture at the local level.

This year, in addition to the participation of small publishers and indigenous language publishers, we will include and facilitate the participation of local libraries, schools, community organisations and social movements in South Africa, who will also be invited to exhibit their work and educational materials.

‘Reading the Word and the World’ has multiple meanings. In addition to emphasising the importance of reading and writing, this year’s theme aims to promote social reflection and in doing so build upon the social and environmental justice movements in South Africa and beyond; as well as encourage both social responsibility and action.

JBF Conference on the Role of Libraries 

This year, as part of the Fair’s focus on ‘Reading the Word and the World: the Role of Libraries’, the JBF will host a conference on the role of libraries, on Thursday, 24th October 2013. Details about participation in the conference will be posted on this site in the near future.

Annual Jozi Book Fair Event

The annual Book Fair will proceed on the 25th and 26th October with its usual programme of seminars, workshops, roundtable discussions, debates, film screening, storytelling, poetry sessions and book launches. This will include specific programmes for children, young adults and the general public.

JBF 2013 Partners

The Jozi Book Fair also seeks to build alliances in the struggle to promote a culture of reading and writing. This year the Jozi Book Fair is partnering with local and national libraries, local schools and resource centres to highlight the important role that libraries play in developing a reading and writing culture. The Jozi Book Fair is also building links with various projects, including libraries, in the Southern African region with the aim of positioning its work in South African within a broader African context.

The Jozi Book Fair also has a Cultural Exchange Programme Partnership with the Gothenburg Book Fair in Sweden.

To read more about the JBF 2013 Partners click here.

For any queries related to the Book Fair, registration as well as the various projects of the Jozi Book Fair, please email jozibookfair@khanyacollege.org.za or phone Sthembele Ngobeni on +27 11 336 9190

We look forward to your participation at the JBF 2013.


Best wishes
Maria van Driel (Phd. Wits)
Director of the Jozi Book Fair