Gothenburg Book Fair Themes 2023

Every year since the founding of the Book Fair in 1985, special themes have been put in focus for the Fair’s programme. These are curated by the Book Fair’s editorial group, often in collaboration with organisations, authorities and publishers. This year, the Fair will focus on the three themes of Jewish Culture, The City and Audio.

Theme: Jewish Culture

Jewish Culture, the theme of the 2023 Gothenburg Book Fair, will present various aspects of the Jewish minority experience from the Bible to present day. The seminar program will highlight Jewish history and thinking with focus on the universal aspects of the multifaceted Jewish culture, as expressed in literature, film, music, Arts, and contemporary life.


The Jewish writer Isaac Bashevis Singer was the first in a long line of Nobel Prize laureates to visit the Book Fair at its very first edition in 1985. Corresponding with Singer and the themes captured in his novels, The Institution for Jewish Culture in Sweden, Guest of Honour of the 2023 Book Fair, seeks to reflect the universalism of the human condition and its dilemmas and the particularity of the Jewish minority experience.

Theme: The City

The City has been a central literary motif since the breakthrough of the novel. Through our theme dedicated to the City, we want to start conversations about the urban environment – not just as a literary backdrop, but also as a sanctuary, as a place to live, and as an architectural project seeking to respond to the challenges of the future.


Drawing upon our host city, Gothenburg, which is celebrating its 400th anniversary and its recent designation as a UNESCO City of Literature, we will be joined by researchers, philosophers and authors to discuss everything from city planning, gentrification and the need for places for free culture to urbanisation and sustainability from a global perspective.


The theme is presented in collaboration with Göteborg & Co.

Theme: Audio

A skilled storyteller with a captivating story has always been able to enchant their listeners. Our Audio theme will bring together audiobook authors, podcasts and narrators and allow them to meet their audience.


We also want to start conversations around the development of the audio format and its role in society, as well as exploring what the cross-connections between literature and audio may be like in the future.


We hope to provide the encounter between storyteller and listener with a physical venue – a place where people can learn something new, be entertained, and experience and embrace the narrative richness and knowledge that the audio format offers.


Podplay is the media partner for this theme