World Poetry Day
Held every year on 21 March, World Poetry Day celebrates one of humanity’s most treasured forms of cultural and linguistic expression and identity. Practiced throughout history – in every culture and on every continent – poetry speaks to our common humanity and our shared values, transforming the simplest of poems into a powerful catalyst for dialogue and peace.
UNESCO first adopted 21 March as World Poetry Day during its 30th General Conference in Paris in 1999, with the aim of supporting linguistic diversity through poetic expression and increasing the opportunity for endangered languages to be heard. World Poetry Day is the occasion to honour poets, revive oral traditions of poetry recitals, promote the reading, writing and teaching of poetry, foster the convergence between poetry and other arts such as theatre, dance, music and painting, and raise the visibility of poetry in the media. As poetry continues to bring people together across continents, all are invited to join in.
What UNESCO does for poetry
UNESCO has been at the forefront of global literacy efforts since 1946, advancing the vision of a literate world for all. It views acquiring and improving literacy skills throughout life as an intrinsic part of the right to education.
Cities designated as UNESCO World Book Capital undertake to carry out activities with the aim of encouraging a culture of reading and diffusing its values in all ages and population groups in and out of the national borders.
The UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) was created in 2004 to promote cooperation with and among cities that have identified creativity as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development.
Created in 2004, the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) gathers 246 cities worldwide, that have recognized culture and creativity as strategic enablers for the achievement of sustainable urban development under the 2030 Agenda.