Within the framework of the Sheikh Taher Al-Zawi Charitable Foundation’s celebration of the World Book Day, the Foundation’s Scientific Affairs Department organized a scientific symposium entitled “Kitarists in Libya and their Role in the Printing and Publishing Movement since the Fifties”, which was held at Bab Al Bahr Hotel in the capital, Tripoli, on May 7, 2018.
The symposium aimed at introducing the civilized and cultural role of libraries in general, and the commercial library in particular, and praising the role of the founding fathers of the commercial library in Libya, as well as raising the level of awareness of the value of the library and encouraging the owners of this honorable profession.
The inaugural session of the symposium began with the speech of the Chairman of the Preparatory Committee, Mr. Mahmoud Al-Mahdi Al-Ghatmi, who opened his speech that this symposium came to celebrate the World Book Day in order to enhance the position of writers around the world as a repository of knowledge and culture and to respect the rights of authors of literary and artistic works and to highlight their role in society as a distinguished elite worthy of appreciation, and to note. The role of the category of scribes who practiced the profession of book marketing in our country at the beginning of independence or shortly before it, as commercial libraries began to spread, the illiteracy rate was more than 90%, and culture was not one of the priorities that successive governments aspire to after the country gained its independence.
He also praised the role of the scribe pioneers in our country, as they carved their way into the rocks in light of the difficult conditions at the time, in an effort to change some of the prevailing concepts.
Al-Ghatami stated that this symposium bears an honorary documentary character that is known by many Libyan scribes, street vendors and publishers throughout Libya.
This was followed by the speech of the President of the Libyan Publishers Union, Dr. Ali Al-Mahdi Awain, who was represented by Dr. Mustafa Badawi, where he began his speech by extending thanks and gratitude to the Sheikh Al-Taher Al-Zawi Foundation and all those in charge of it for their generous gesture honoring some Libyan libraries in this documentary symposium and their attempt to light a candle of knowledge at a time The book was relatively forgotten, and this gesture is considered a badge for libraries that suffer from marginalization and do not receive any noticeable attention.
Dr. Al-Badawi stated that the Libyan Publishers Association, despite all the difficulties it is going through, stresses the continuity of communication with readers and researchers in Libya and abroad and works to represent our country in most of the internal and external celebrations and exhibitions and to publish the creations of our writers and our cultural elite.
Dr. Al-Badawi stressed the determination to develop the publishing profession in our country in order to facilitate access to the necessary knowledge for readers, especially the youth category. He also called on all Libyan cultural elites and university faculty members to the importance of communicating with the Libyan publisher to publish and distribute their manuscripts, considering the book is our national memory and cultural identity.
On the sidelines of the opening session, three publishers were honored for their efforts in publishing the books of Sheikh Al-Taher Ahmed Al-Zawi. They are:
Mr. Makki Zuraiqani
Sheikh / Ashour Abrik Al-Damanhouri
Mr./ the late Muhammad Al-Rammah Bashina
The pioneers of the publishing world in Libya were also honored, and they are:
The late professor/ Awad Muhammad Zakoub
The late Professor/ Muhammad Bashir Al-Ferjani
The late professor/ Saleh Al-Sharif
The late Professor/ Mohamed Noureddin Barion
The symposium included scientific sessions in which researchers engaged in commercial activity in the Libyan library, old and new, students of the library department at Libyan universities, and those interested in document and information science participated.