HK Book Fair opens with more patriotic atmosphere

Hong Kong: The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) welcomed its annual book fair. Exhibitors told the Global Times that this year’s fair has less books advocating extreme political ideas and has a more patriotic atmosphere.
The 31st Hong Kong Book Fair is scheduled to run from Wednesday to July 20, with more than 760 exhibitors including publishers and public organizations taking part.
Pictures taken before the event show that books related to the national security law were placed prominently on shelves. There are also booksellers exhibiting illustrated books about Zhong Nanshan, Tu Youyou and other outstanding figures from the Chinese mainland.
A representative from Bauhinia Magazine told the Global Times on Wednesday at the book fair that they are displaying more books about China’s history and Hong Kong’s development path, as well as patriotic education this year, as the political environment has shifted a great deal after the enactment of the national security law.
The representative, surnamed Chen, said he noticed a number of other publishers have also put up books of the same kind.
A staffer from the City University of Hong Kong told the Global Times that the university has put up a promotion board for a book titled “Hong Kong of China: Rethinking the Relationship between the Mainland and Hong Kong.”
Orange News is also advocating their new book titled “New Order in Hong Kong,” written by Tian Feilong, an associate professor at Beihang University and a member of the Chinese Association of Hong Kong and Macao Studies.
Although books on Chinese politics have not been the best-selling books in previous fairs, the year-long social turmoil in Hong Kong in 2019 reflects the need for society to strengthen national education and deepen the understanding of national conditions, so there is a large market for such books now, Lai Yiu-Keung, deputy chief editor of prominent publisher Chung Hwa Book Company (Hong Kong), said to local media outlet Wen Wei Po on Tuesday.
“These books were mainly purchased in large quantities by institutions in the past, but now the education sector is talking about national education, teachers and students need them as well. There will certainly be a market for these books,” Lai said.
Earlier in June, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), the organizer of the Hong Kong Book Fair, said that the fair will not proactively vet exhibits as the fair is a free and open platform, but participants will be asked to comply with the city’s laws.
– The Daily Mail-Global Times News exchange item