Book Week expands its reach

While Jerusalem is the undisputed hub of the program, Hebrew Book Week's presence is increasingly being felt throughout the country.

June 14, 2006 10:36
2 minute read.
book week 88 248

book week 88 248. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Noga Bar-Lev lingers over the tables of books, scanning titles with the engrossed focus of a true book lover. "I've been wanting to read this," she says, scooping up a copy of Yair Lapid's The Second Woman. "I look forward to Book Week every year," she says. "It's not just books, there's such a good feeling here. There's something for everyone." Tsila Chayoun, the producer of Hebrew Book Week, which runs until June 17, is inclined to agree. Chayoun says that she is "thrilled" by this year's response to the program, which combines traditional book sales with cultural and literary programming. Chayoun credits the program's success to several factors, the first of which being its move from the Israel Museum to its new location at the old bus station, which underwent extensive renovations in preparation for the event. "This is an open, inviting venue," she says. "It's much more accessible; it's a charming atmosphere." In addition, Chayoun says, the programming - which includes literary salons, author presentations and children's theater - is free, thanks to a generous subsidy from the Keshet Foundation and the Jerusalem Municipality. Bar-Lev, who brought her young daughter to a free exhibit of "Pop-Up" books in the renovated bus station, says that the lack of fee is an added bonus for her. "We can come to something different every night if we want to, and we don't have to buy anything." She holds up her bulging bag with a rueful grin. "But we buy anyway." While Jerusalem is the undisputed hub of the program, Hebrew Book Week's presence is increasingly being felt throughout the country. In Haifa and Tel Aviv, Kfar Saba and Ramat Gan, Book Week is celebrated in parks, shopping malls and coffee shops. Chayoun says that while Book Week activities have taken place in Be'er Sheva for the past five years, the program's organizers "saw a real need to increase and expand upon them." This year, the Noa Dar Dance Company opened the city's Book Week with a performance inspired by the poetry of Lea Goldberg. Tickets to the highly-subsidized performance, which usually costs NIS 80, were sold for only NIS 15. Perhaps most notable, though, is Chayoun's determination to reach places that have traditionally not had equal access to cultural events due to a lack of proximity and funds. This year marks the first time that Book Week activities are being held in the isolated, struggling Negev towns of Dimona and Yeruham, where libraries and bookstores are hosting authors' nights and children's activities. "There is very definately a need for this kind of programming," Chayoun says. "And we hope to continue expanding our efforts in this area." While Chayoun's early estimates of Book Week's success are very positive -"something like 8,000 people came the first night alone"-- she says she looks forward to seeing the exact numbers at the end of the week.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Sarah Silverman
August 26, 2014
Jewish women take home gold at 2014 Emmys