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Authors contribute to the social debate at Helsinki Book Fair – 30 international guests participate

Authors contribute to the social debate at Helsinki Book Fair – 30 international guests participate

The Helsinki Book Fair programme has been published and it offers 900 programmes. Finnish authors who have published a new book and more than 30 authors from abroad will perform on the stages. There will be over 1000 performers. This year, the book fair will feature even more social topics. Eight debates are organised at the event, where the authors will participate in the social debates. “My hope is that open, equal and brisk confrontations will be seen on the stages,” says Ville Blåfield, Helsinki Book Fair’s new Programme Director.

The programme of the book fair is organised on 15 stages, two of which are for programmes in Swedish. The programme features autumn’s favourite authors from Satu Rämö to Raija Oranen, from Kati and Jari Tervo to Olli and Riitta Jalonen. Kari Hotakainen, Tommi Kinnunen, Riikka Pulkkinen and Kjell and Mårten Westö will, among others, also perform at the book fair. Most of the international guest authors are present at Helsinki Expo and Convention Centre, but some will participate in the fair programme online. Author guests include Aleksei Navalnyi’s Press Secretary Kira Jarmysh, Mohamed Mbougar Sarr from Senegal, Heather Morris from Australia, Sweden’s Erik Engelv and Nordic detective fiction authors Anna Jansson, Lars Kepler, Denise Rudberg and Viveca Sten. On Sunday, the book fair will feature nearly every single candidate for the Nordic Council’s literature award. Several Estonian authors will also be present at the book fair. In addition to authors, also politicians, artists and influencers perform at the fair.

Literature is widely displayed at the book fair. As during earlier years, also this year the programme has been built up by Tiedetori’s science operators, The Union of Finnish Writers and Nuoren Voiman Liitto. The programme on the stages with Swedish program has been put together by Svenska litteratursällskapet. KirjaKallio AKA Kallion ilmaisutaidon lukio is responsible for the programme on the Kallio stage for young adults. Friday is comic strip day at the fair, Saturday is detective fiction day, Sunday is a day for poems while reading circles are organised every day. Two stages, Kumpula and Toukola, focus on children’s programmes.  The theme of the children’s area is Excursion, and the theme will recur as an excursion trail in the exhibition hall of the Centre.

Controversial texts as a background for constructive debates

”Compiling the fair programme has been a struggle with abundance, for which we thank the publishers and authors. This year, topics such as Russia and the war in Ukraine emerge. The eight unique debates will in turn increase the discussion at the book fair”, says Blåfield.

Helsinki Book Fair organises constructive debates in cooperation with Helsingin Sanomat. Helsingin Sanomat’s Editor Veera Luoma-aho hosts the debates together with Blåfield. Author Sofi Oksanen opens the debate Are we too blue-eyed about Russia? and debates the theme with Minister of Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto. Author Jenni Räinä presents the debate Do we need more blaming in the climate crisis? Petteri Taalas, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organisation debates the theme with Räinä. In addition to these, the war in Ukraine and foreign policy without alternatives, Finnish architecture, drug policies, misogyny, decision-makers of different generations and the relationship of humans to other species will be discussed at the fair. Controversial articles published in Helsingin Sanomat are also included in the debates. All debates appart from the Swedish one are in Finnish.

Nearly 300 companies participate in the book fair

At the Helsinki Book Fair the public can meet authors and other friends of literature, make purchases and follow the programme. “The atmosphere at Helsinki Book Fair is unique. This year we will be going back to normal as the Food & Wine Fair will once again be organised in connection with the book fair. In addition to new books, the Antiquarian Book Fair and the Stamp Fair spread out in the halls of the Expo Centre. The programme on the Senaatintori and Hakaniemi stages can also be followed as online streaming”, Blåfield says.

A nationally significant cultural forum and literary event

Helsinki Book Fair promotes reading as a hobby, the appreciation of literature and the sale of books in Finland. The event is a nationally significant cultural forum – a topic pioneer, a challenging debater, a storyteller and a civilizer of the heart. The most important values of the book fair are freedom of speech, equality and respect for human dignity.

Helsinki Expo and Convention Centre organizes the Helsinki Book Fair from 27 to 30 October 2022 at Helsinki Expo and Convention Centre in cooperation with The Finnish Publishers Association and the Booksellers Association of Finland. In connection with Helsinki Book Fair, there is an Antiquarian Book Fair, which is organised in cooperation with the Finnish Antiquarian Association. At the same time, even the Wine & Food event and the Record Fair and Stamp Fair will be organised.

The event is open Thur-Sat 27 – 29 October from 10 AM to 8 PM and Sun 30 October from 10 AM to 6 PM.

Buy tickets in advance at a lower price from:

Further information:
Information Officer Teija Armanto, Messukeskus, tel. +358 50 376 0804,
Programme Director Ville Blåfield, tel. +358 50 310 3017, #kirjamessut

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Photos from Helsinki Book Fair

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