Ibadan Book Club is an initiative of Society of Young Nigerian Writers. It was established by the Society in order to contribute its own quota towards the growth and development of Reading Culture in Nigeria. Ibadan Book Club consists of group of people who get together, periodically meet to discuss the book they have red, and to exchange such books. The members of the club encourage each other, and learn to read with a critical awareness, articulating their opinions on a particular book with the others. Certain types of books not available or read receive attention through the book club.
The television and radio could be used to propagate good literature and encourage reading. A television book club (like the Ophrah Winfrey Talk Show) discussing books would give the Viewer an idea as to how these book clubs are constituted, besides introducing them to the books being discussed on each programme.
Discussion could focus on genres of literature (the classic, best sellers, travel writing, science fiction, women’s writing etc. or themes (good, evil, ambition, oppression etc), or authors (Chukwuemeka Ike, Chinua Achebe, Flora Nwapa, Buchi Emecheta etc.) Just as it is desirable for primary school children to be read to, to arouse their interest in books, the strategy could be used effectively with adults through radio program. A program similar to “Good Books” on the BBC World Service would get the appetites pf potential readers. A fifteen minute reading from the works of a Nigeria novelist or poet would serve the purpose of making people aware of the gifted writers in our midst besides promoting the writers themselves. The programme could include information on the publisher, date of publication and where one is likely to find books.
Ibadan Book Club always hold book fairs (inviting publishers to display their titles at reduced prices), and once a year, as a special attraction. A live author could be invited to read from his or her works.
The reading promotion campaign could undertake a Book Drive (rather than a book launch which is so common in our midst and which is aimed at procuring money rather than encouraging people to read the book in question). Children could be prompted to bring the book they have read and exchange them for books they have not read.
In order to wear people away from the cheap newspaper or sensational gossip-magazine (which have a limited use) books have to be available at affordable prices. With the resources available in the city, children could be exposed to certain broad categories of fiction, science fiction and so forth. This will enable children and young readers to see the qualitative differences in literature written for them to identify setting, character, theme, author’s point of view, action and message.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF IBADAN BOOK CLUB
- To promote reading culture in Ibadan as a city and Nigeria as a country.
- To promote writers and their creative writings/literary arts
- To enable children and young readers see the qualitative differences in literature written for the, to identify setting, character, theme, author’s point of view, action and message
- To educate, entertain and inform readers irrespective of age, color, tribe, religion and sex.
- To hold book fairs (inviting publishers to display their titles at reduced prices), and once a year, as a special attraction.