“German Stories” will be the theme of Germany’s presentation at the Taipei International Book Exhibition from 12 to 17 February 2019. “German Stories” represents the diversity of stories that Germany has to tell: the wide-ranging cultural programme on offer at the German collective stand explores literary highlights, as well as socio-political and book trade themes. 13 German writers will present their works together with Taiwanese authors at the fair: Dr Regina Bittner, Theresia Enzensberger, Sebastian Fitzek, Arne Jysch, Marc-Uwe Kling, Miriam Meckel, Axel Scheffler, Wilhelm Schmid, Ronen Steinke, Stephan Thome, Holger Volland, Ferdinand von Schirach and Alexander von Schönburg. Complementing these literary voices are explorations of topical social issues – including the impact of artificial intelligence and technology on society – and issues that have resonance in Taiwan, such as coming to terms with the past and defining justice.
Dr Andreas Görgen, Head of the Directorate-General for Culture and Communication at the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin, said: “I am delighted that Germany will be Guest of Honour at the Taipei International Book Exhibition for the second time, as fostering and promoting German-Taiwanese relations, particularly in the fields of culture and business, is especially important to us. That is why our presentation showcases not only Germany’s literary diversity, but also wider aspects of our culture, such as architecture and design ‘made in Germany’”.
“The Frankfurter Buchmesse has had a close relationship with the Taipei International Book Exhibition for many years – whether as an exhibitor, consultant or curator of the professional programme. This year, Germany’s presentation as Guest of Honour offers an excellent opportunity to strengthen the deep ties between the German and Taiwanese publishing sectors”, said Juergen Boos, Director of the Frankfurter Buchmesse. “We are forging links between German and Taiwanese publishers, and thereby helping to boost the rights business in the long term”, Boos added. ”In particular, we hope to give the public an up-to-date picture of the very latest German fiction and non-fiction through our events programme, which features a number of authors visiting from Germany.”
“The Goethe-Institut Taipei organises and supports a broad spectrum of cultural events in order to showcase German culture in Taiwan and to promote German-Taiwanese and intercultural exchange”, explained Jens Rösler, Director of the Goethe-Institut Taipei. “Taiwan has a strong reading culture, and Taiwanese readers have a tremendous intellectual curiosity and interest in German publications and debates. This provides an ideal basis for our partnership, and is why we have been working with the Taipei International Book Exhibition for a number of years. We are delighted that, thanks to Germany’s participation as Guest of Honour at the Taipei International Book Exhibition, in close cooperation with the Frankfurter Buchmesse, we are able to take our collaboration and cultural partnership with our Taiwanese partner institutions and friends to a new level.”
The Guest of Honour programme is conceived, planned and organised by Frankfurter Buchmesse, Goethe-Institut Taipei and German Institute Taipei, working in close collaboration. These partners are also liaising closely with the Taipei Book Fair Foundation, which organises the fair, and with local publishers and agencies. Germany’s appearance as Guest of Honour is financially supported by the Federal Foreign Office.
Bauhaus, Burnout, Blueprint – cultural programme at the stand
Alongside current German literature, the German collective stand will showcase culture and design from Germany. To mark the 100th anniversary of Bauhaus in 2019, Germany’s Guest of Honour presentation will devote particular attention to this legendary movement. The design of the 414m2 German collective stand draws on elements of Bauhaus. Visitors will also have the chance to slip into costumes from Oskar Schlemmer’s “Triadisches Ballett” (Triadic Ballet) and to capture the moment with a photo. The costumes for this interactive experience are inspired by Schlemmer’s own drawings and designs, and were conceived and produced in collaboration with the award-winning Frankfurt-based refugee initiative “Stitch by Stitch”.
The events programme at the stand brings German authors and journalists together with their Taiwanese colleagues. Bestselling author Marc-Uwe Kling will talk to journalist and author Yu Li Lin about his futuristic satire Qualityland, in which he predicts that algorithms will determine our work, leisure and love lives in the not-too-distant future. In conversation with Agnes Chen, journalist Miriam Meckel will present her Letter to My Life, a personal account of how she experienced and overcame burnout. Theresia Enzensberger (Blaupause / Blueprint) and Jade Y. Chen – a theatre director based in Taiwan and Germany who has also published a number of successful novels – will trace the similarities and differences in the lives and love stories of their heroines. And in his talk “Recht oder Unrecht” (“Justice or Injustice”), criminal defence lawyer and bestselling author Ferdinand von Schirach will probe our understanding of “right” and “wrong”.
Publishers and other exhibitors will be on site, including Carlsen, Thienemann-Esslinger Verlag, Loewe, Ullstein, Carl Hanser Verlag, Schweizerbart/Borntraeger, Delius Klasing, Suhrkamp, arsEdition and Quaternio Editions Lucerne (Switzerland), as well as Deutsche Welle (DW).
BIZ Peking, the overseas office of the Frankfurter Buchmesse in China, will exhibit especially beautiful German books at the stand, as well as selected titles from themed collections. Other collections on display will feature books on the Bauhaus movement and artificial intelligence, graphic novels/comics, and children’s and young adult books – including titles translated into English (“25 Children’s and Picture Books That Travel”). New literary titles, non-fiction and how-to titles will also be on display, with a particular focus on Chinese translations of works by authors at the fair, and English translations of contemporary German literature (“50 Books That Travel”).
Deutsche Welle’s “100 German Must-Reads” will present 100 seminal German works from the 20th and 21st centuries in text and video form. Sabine Kieselbach (DW literary editor), Philipp Bilsky (Head of DW’s Chinese Service and of the DW office in Taipei), and translator Grace Huang will discuss why the past continues to fascinate us today, but also how the “100 German Must-Reads” list shows readers a different, new Germany.
The digital press kit is available for download here: https://fbm.cloud.booklan.de/index.php/s/BAo1YPgJQRXc7UK
Information about the Taiwanese book market
Within the Greater China region (mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong), the Taiwanese book market is the second largest after mainland China. As a result, Taiwanese publishers are strategically important rights partners for German publishers. Taiwan’s great interest in German culture and language is reflected in the steady number of translation rights sold, which fluctuated between 81 and 107 per year during the 2013-2017 period.
About the Taipei International Book Exhibition (TIBE)
With more than 600 exhibitors from 59 countries, the TIBE is one of the most important book fairs in Asia, inviting around 580,000 visitors to participate in an interactive reading experience every year. On some 30,000 square metres in the centrally located Taipei World Trade Center and the extensive adjacent conference complex (Hall 3) 1,180 events will be held, covering a wide spectrum of literary genres – from children’s and young adult literature to non-fiction and fiction – for Taiwanese and international audiences.
Official website of the Taipei International Book Exhibition 2019:
> Find all press releases and photos on our website. https://www.buchmesse.de/en/press/
About Frankfurter Buchmesse
Frankfurter Buchmesse is the international publishing industry’s biggest trade fair – with over 7,500 exhibitors from 109 countries, around 285,000 visitors, over 4,000 events and some 10,000 accredited journalists and bloggers in attendance. It is the most important international marketplace for content – from novels and children’s books to academic databases and stories for films, games and virtual reality experiences. Publishing professionals from around the world meet here with partners from the technology sector and from related creative and cultural industries, sparking new partnerships and business models. A strong conference programme ensures that Frankfurter Buchmesse is a major source of inspiration for content experts from around the world. Since 1976, the book fair has featured an annual Guest of Honour country, which showcases its book market, literature and culture to attendees in a variety of ways. Frankfurter Buchmesse organises the participation of German publishers at around 20 international book fairs and hosts trade events throughout the year in major international markets. Frankfurter Buchmesse is a subsidiary of the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels (German Publishers & Booksellers Association). https://www.buchmesse.de/en
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