Stage set for Kerala Literature Festival (KLF) 2023

Calicut, 12 to 15 January 2023

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A glimpse of a session from KLF 2020
A glimpse of a session from KLF 2020. Photo: KLF

“The KLF is a festival full of color, literature, and exchange of ideas. I can’t imagine a better place where books and souls converge in the verdant landscape of Kerala.” Francesc Miralles (author of Ikigai)

The second-largest festival of its kind in Asia, the KLF is a landmark event set along the shores of the Arabian sea. The sixth edition of the Kerala Literature Festival is scheduled for 12 -15 January 2023 on the beaches of Calicut, which is also known as Kozhikode.

The fair is organized by the DC Kizakhemuri Foundation, a philanthropic organization founded in 2001 as a tribute to the late DC Kizhakemur. A freedom fighter, social activist, writer, and publisher, Kizhakemur is considered as the doyen of Indian publishing. Kizhakemur is also known as the father of the paperback revolution in India and was instrumental in the abolition of the sales tax on books.

With an aggregate footfall of more than 3 lakh (300,000), KLF is one of the largest cultural gatherings in the country. The event brings together artists, actors, celebrities, writers, thinkers, and activists closer to people of different backgrounds and interests. 

The sessions at KLF aim to map literature through discussions on the aspects of science and technology, art, cinema, politics, writing, and the various facets of culture that shape human consciousness.

The KLF is a platform for people across Kerala and from other parts of India and overseas to witness discussions on cinema, art, culture, dance, music, science, technology, environment, and literature. The event is open to the public, non-exclusive, and non-aligned to offer a democratic and open platform for discussions and idea exchange.

Organized after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the KLF 2023 will be a mega affair with more than 400 speakers from countries across the globe participating.

Nobel laureates, including Orhan Pamuk, Abhijit Banerjee, and Ada Yonath, bestselling authors such as Jeffery Archer, Francesc Miralles, Wendy Doniger, the recent Booker Prize winner Geetanjali Shree, economists such as Palanivel Thiagarajan, Sanjeev Sanyal, and advertising guru Piyush Pandey are on the initial list of speakers set to participate at KLF 2023.

For up-to-date information on the sessions, speakers, schedule, and registration, please go to www.keralaliteraturefestival.com.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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