World Book Day

23 April 2021

World Book Day, also known as World Book and Copyright Day, is celebrated across the globe on April 23 every year. World Book Day is celebrated to recognise and promote the benefit of reading books, publishing and copyright. World Book Day is organized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

"The power of books must be fully harnessed. We must ensure their access so that everyone can take refuge in reading, and by doing so, be able to dream, learn and reflect" — Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, on the occasion of World Book and Copyright Day 2021

April 23 is observed as World Book Day because several prominent authors were either born or have died on this day. While William Shakespeare, Miguel de Cervantes and Josep Pla died on April 23, Manuel Mejia Vallejo and Maurice Druon were born on April 23.

As part of the celebrations on World Book Day 2021, UNESCO has created a bookface challenge.

“The book covers are incredibly important and play a vital role in our buying decisions. We’re all extremely judgemental about covers. The pandemic has also reminded us all of the importance of books and reading for comfort and escapism, we’ve all needed it this past year...in such circumstances, we invite students, teachers, readers from around the world as well as the book industry and library services to testify and express their love for reading by participating to this challenge,” says an official statement on the UNESCO website.

UNESCO decided to commemorate a day and dedicate it to reading and books in the UNESCO's General Conference held in Paris 1995 to discover the pleasure of reading and gain a renewed respect for the irreplaceable contributions of those, who have furthered the social and cultural progress of humanity.