Lire à Douala 2022 was hosted in the Cameroonian city of Douala from April 3-7, 2022. The festival theme was “Knowledge and Heritage”.
“Lire à Douala” (English: reading in Doula) is an association whose objective is to promote reading, written expression, and the development of literary culture, in particular for young people in Douala, Cameroon. The aim of the association, founded in 2015, is to create a dialogue between knowledge, that which stems from discoveries, of history, but especially those endogenous often marginalized people who are more autonomous, intuitive, and pragmatic.
Lire à Douala this year included public-author meetings during “Talks” organized throughout the period of the event featuring among others writers Mutt Lon, Sami Tchak, Joseph Mbarga, and musician Blick Bassy. There were also visits by the writers to schools to promote exchange and sharing like at the Lycée d’Akwa Nord, Lycée bilingue de New Bell, Lycée de la Cité des Palmiers, Collège Emilie Saker, and Institut Ucac-Icam. There was an initiation to comics workshop for young people, as well as a donation of books to school libraries of partner establishments. The events were hosted in venues like Onomo Hotel, Institut Français, Collège Emilie Saker, and Galerie MAM.
One of the unique offerings was the Librairie Ephémère where people could buy books at the symbolic price of 1000 FCFA per kilo. The aim of this was to make reading accessible to as many people as possible. The activity is made possible thanks to book donations collected all year round by the association’s volunteers everywhere where they find goodwill. Librairie Ephémère illustrates the desire to create a space for sharing, meeting, and conviviality around the book, in a warm and relaxed atmosphere. Publishers also took part in the event to exhibit and sell their published titles and interact with the reading public.
Here are some photographs from the event;