SIBF 2022: Sudanese historian honoured as ‘Cultural Personality of the Year’

Yusuf Fadl Hasan mentioned the Sharjah Ruler's visit to Khartoum in 1974, and thanked him for taking an interest in the African and Asian Studies Institute

Supplied photo
Supplied photo

Afkar Ali Ahmed

Published: Wed 2 Nov 2022, 12:01 PM

Last updated: Wed 2 Nov 2022, 9:37 PM

Sudanese historian Yusuf Fadl Hasan was honoured as the SIBF 2022 ‘Cultural Personality of the Year’ at the opening ceremony of the book fair on Tuesday.

Under the theme ‘Spread the Word’, the 2022 edition of SIBF runs between November 2-13 with the participation of 2,213 publishers from 95 countries.

His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah marked the opening of SIBF 2022 by welcoming the gathering of eminent writers, intellectuals, publishers and leading thought leaders from the region and across the world to a vibrant new edition of the annual book fair.

Sheikh Sultan said: “The past edition of the annual Sharjah International Book Fair witnessed the launch of 17 volumes of the Historical Corpus of the Arabic Language and this year, we are launching a new set of 19 volumes. These 36 volumes document nine letters of the Arabic alphabet and I would like to express my gratitude to the researchers, linguists, and experts for their untiring dedication and efforts that have led to this great accomplishment.”

Distinguished honour

Sudanese historian Yusuf Fadl Hasan, expressed his gratitude to the Sharjah Ruler for conferring him with the distinguished honour of Cultural Personality of SIBF 2022.

He said: “I recollect the visit of His Highness to Khartoum in 1974 and thank him for taking a keen interest in our work at the African and Asian Studies Institute. With deep gratitude, I remember his efforts to foster dialogue between the Arabic nations and African continent and for continuing to support this journey of communication amongst global cultures through hosting conferences and other events in Sharjah.”

Sharjah invests in culture

In his address, Lorenzo Fanara, Italy’s Ambassador to the UAE, asserted that Sharjah is the Cultural Capital of the world and has “spread the word of books and knowledge across nations.”

Thanking the Sharjah Ruler, the Italian Ambassador said: “Your Highness has sculpted the name of Sharjah in the history of culture.”

He added that through its activities as Guest of Honour at SIBF 2022, visitors can discover the common values shared between Italy and the Arab nations.

Describing how the roots of commonly used words and names in his home country are derived from Arabic, he said: “These names emphasise our common history. By sharing a common history, we share common values and through these cultural values, we can overcome divisive agendas and forge a future founded on openness and knowledge for the next generations.”

After the opening ceremony, His Highness toured the exhibition inspecting the stalls of participating publishing houses, including the Guest of Honour pavilion, where he was briefed on the events and activities that will be organised throughout the 12-day book fair.


Power of the written word in building civilisations

Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of SBA; SIBF 2022 Cultural Personality Yusuf Fadl Hasan; and Lorenzo Fanara, Italy’s Ambassador to the UAE, delivered keynote speeches at the opening ceremony. The Italian Ambassador represented Italy, the Guest of Honour nation of the 41st SIBF.

In his keynote address, SBA Chairman Ahmed Al Ameri announced that for the second year in a row, SIBF had emerged as the largest book fair in the world in terms of buying and selling copyrights in 2022.

The SBA Chairman said: “The Sharjah International Book Fair has a history that spans 40 over years and has cemented the foundation of the emirate’s future for a century ahead! My hearty congratulations to Sharjah and the UAE on this momentous occasion! This feat is founded in the wise vision, unwavering support and relentless efforts of Your Highness… You have our sincere gratitude.”

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