UNESCO declared Kozhikode, Kerala as India’s first ‘City of Literature’.

More on the news

  • In October 2023, Kozhikode had earned a place in the ‘Literature’ category of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN).
  • The state government also announced that from coming year, June 23 will be celebrated as the ‘City of Literature’ Day of Kozhikode.
  • On this day, special awards will be announced in six categories.

Why Kozhikode?

  • Kozhikode is home to more than 70 publishing houses, which bring out 400 to 500 books a year, and 545 libraries, which account for tens of thousands of members.
  • It is a place known for literary greats like the late S K Pottakkad and Vaikom Muhammed Basheer. It is the base of literary activities of legendary Malayalam writer M T Vasudevan Nair for several decades.
  • The city is committed to promoting its writers: the P.A. Lalitha Award, the S.K. Pottekkatt Literature Award and the Mathrubhumi Literary Award are all ceremonies that highlight local talent and encourage creative innovation.

UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization)

  • UNESCO founded in 1945 has 195 Members and 8 Associate Members and is governed by the General Conference and the Executive Board.
  • UNESCO promotes international collaboration in education, science, and culture. 
  • The Organization has more than 50 field offices around the world and its headquarters are located in Paris.

The UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) 

  • It was created in 2004 to promote cooperation with and among cities that have identified creativity as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development. 
  • The Network was born out of UNESCO’s Global Alliance for Cultural Diversity initiative, which was created in 2002.
  • The network encompasses seven creative fields of UCCN: Crafts & Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Music, and Media Arts.

India’s other cities in UCCN

Srinagar & JaipurCrafts & Folk Art
Chennai, Gwalior & VaranasiMusic

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