It's always reading time
April 24th. 2018
One of the most popular festivals of Catalonia is certainly Sant Jordi. The origin of its relationship with books goes back to the 1920s, when the booksellers decided to organize themselves and bring their stores onto the streets to present their novelties and encourage reading. The success of the initiative prompted the establishment of 23th of April as Book Day, which coincides with the death of Cervantes and Shakespeare.
From its beginnings, this gave a great impulse to the Catalan publishing production which still remains today. The impact of the festival led UNESCO to declare the 23th of April as World Book Day and Copyright Day in 1995.
Reading is Fundamental
There are many educational initiatives that encourage reading among citizens, based on the premise that reading is one of the cornerstones for the acquisition of knowledge which inspires and enhances the imagination.
Reading is important while it increases knowledge and keeps us informed. In addition, it awakens our imagination, feeds our inspiration and enhances the emergence of ideas. It is not only one of the best exercises for our brain but also able to release our emotions.
Concerning the knowledge, reading as a habit is a way to improve the comprehension of texts and grammar, increase vocabulary and reinforce correct writing. In short, it improves our communication skills.
Barcelona in 2018
This year, the Diada de Sant Jordi (Saint George’s Day) had almost 900 book stands on the streets of Barcelona. According to the booksellers, the volume of sales increased by 5% compared to 2017: a total of 1.5 million books were sold with a total turnover of 19.2 million euros. This festival represents between 5% and 8% of the annual turnover in the sale of books in the Catalan community.
The four most remarkable trends in the activity of this special day were: the purchase of more than one book per person, the purchase of standard editions, the diversification of the titles sold and the increase of sales of literature in Catalan.