Let's share the joy of reading

Thelma Yim

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Three hundred students and guests applauded the slogan “Reading for fun, I’ll do it”, at the Opening Ceremony of “World Book Day” and “2004 Hong Kong Reading Month”. The Ceremony was co-organized by CityU, RTHK Radio 1, Hong Kong Publishing Federation, Hong Kong Education City, The Hong Kong Association of Youth Groups, and The Hong Kong Public Libraries (Leisure and Cultural Services Department), on 23 April afternoon at CityU University Circle.

 

Hong Kong Education Commission Chairman Dr Rosanna Wong and CityU President Professor H K Chang launched the Ceremony and spoke on reading. Dr Wong maintains a reading habit despite her busy life. She encouraged students to develop a reading habit since childhood. She suggested young readers to start with favourite titles and keep on reading persistently. Professor Chang shared his reading secret as well, “I read every day. Reading is a component of my life,” he said. Having developed a reading habit since primary four, Professor Chang suggested reading on an extensive range of topics. “A book that cannot trigger
your interest may have profound impact on you if you stick on and finish it,” he said. Professor Chang then presented The Elements of Style by William Strunk to Dr Wong, kicking off a book giving ceremony among the guests, including The Hon Timothy Fok Tsun-ting, member of the Legislative Council, Dr Chan Man-hung, Director of the Hong Kong Publishing Federation, Ms Jacqueline Cheng, Chief Executive Officer of the Hong Kong Education City, Mr Peter Shiu, Assistant Director of Broadcasting of RHTK, and singer Mr Edmund Leung.

 

To celebrate the World Book Day, Professor Chang also announced that fostering reading culture is one of the themes of CityU’s 20th anniversary celebration. Talks and book fairs will be held on campus to encourage students to read more. Professor Chang is invited to be one of the reading ambassadors to promote proper reading habits in the community.  (Audio link to Professor Chang’s two recommended book in RTHK’s one-minute reading promotion (in Cantonese).)

 

Symbolism of World Book Day

In 1995, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization announced 23 April as the World Book Day to encourage reading and publishing, and to promote the protection of intellectual property. April 23 is chosen because it is the birthdays of great authors including William Shakespeare and Vladimir Nabokov. Coincidently, on this day in 1616, Shakespeare, Miguel de Cervantes, and Inca Garcilaso died. It is also a Spanish tradition that on the world book day, book recipients present a rose to their book givers.

 

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