Our Privacy Statement & Cookie Policy

By continuing to browse our site you agree to our use of cookies, revised Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can change your cookie settings through your browser.

I agree

Paris Book Fair: A festival of culture celebrating global literature

Ross Cullen in Paris


France's writers are internationally renowned, from dramatists to philosophers, poets to novelists. And for three days in April, the country's love of literature is on show at the Paris Book Fair.

It's a festival of culture and reading, with book signings and writing workshops. There are many different nationalities represented at the fair, and Canada's French-speaking region of Quebec is this year's guest of honor.

One of the overseas stands celebrated Chinese literature. Author Ye Mi explained why she has focused her work on the story of women in China.

"Because after China's reforms and opening-up, women's economic status is improving, and their awareness of their own independence is strengthening," she said.

‌"Also, when I wrote this novel, I was going through menopause and I felt that I should write about a woman. This was a gift to myself."


Botswana offers to send Germany 20,000 elephants

Genetic clues to left-handedness revealed

European pasta market beats to Turkish durum

Like France, China also has a rich literary tradition, from lyric poetry to drama and fiction. Some of the country's top authors were invited to the fair.

"What is written in this novel is actually a very contemporary small village in China," said Qiao Ye. "It was originally a traditional farming village, and now it has become a cultural tourism-type village.

"In small places, the changes in people's emotions, moral changes, and changes in human nature between neighbors are very interesting."

‌The book fair doesn't just celebrate publications but also the art of writing in French. Dictation is a classic elementary-school test and a mass spelling exercise took place as part of the three-day event.

‌Mixing politics and literature is common in France. The president, Emmanuel Macron, is reported to have written a novel which he has shown only to his closest friends. He attended the fair on its opening day, alongside culture minister Rachida Dati.

‌The former president Nicolas Sarkozy, right-wing figurehead Marine Le Pen, and current finance minister Bruno Le Maire are all also published authors.

Paris Book Fair: A festival of culture celebrating global literature

Subscribe to Storyboard: A weekly newsletter bringing you the best of CGTN every Friday

Search Trends