UNESCO names Kerala's Kozhikode, India's first 'City of Literature'

UNESCO names Kerala's Kozhikode, India's first 'City of Literature'
Kozhikode, a city in the Indian state of Kerala, has been officially designated as a UNESCO City of Literature. This recognition makes Kozhikode the first Indian city to receive this prestigious title. UNESCO has formally conveyed this honor to the Kozhikode Corporation as the city joins the ranks of 55 newly selected creative cities worldwide.
Kozhikode Corporation's Mayor, Beena Philip, has expressed excitement over the city receiving the "City of Literature" title. She emphasized that it is a remarkable acknowledgment of the city's excellence in the fields of literature and media. She attributed this success to the collective efforts of many individuals, as well as to the sustained endeavors of the corporation over the past two years.
The mayor further said with the achievement as a city of literature, the city administration plans to initiate further projects to promote literature. Kozhikode has a history of hosting various literary gatherings, including the Kerala Literature Festival. On World Cities Day, 55 cities joined the Unesco Creative Cities Network (UCCN) following their designation by Unesco Director-General Audrey Azoulay. New cities were acknowledged for their strong commitment to harnessing culture and creativity as part of their development strategies and displaying innovative practices in human-centered urban planning.
The Creative Cities Network has expanded to 350 cities across more than 100 countries. The network represents seven creative fields, including Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts, and Music. Gwalior, a city in Madhya Pradesh, India, has been added to the network for its contributions to the field of music.
The newly designated cities will collaborate with network members to enhance their resilience against emerging threats such as climate change, increasing inequality, and rapid urbanization. It is projected that by 2050, 68% of the global population will reside in urban areas. The Creative Cities that have recently been appointed are invited to participate in the 2024 UCCN Annual Conference in Portugal, focusing on engaging young people in discussions for the next decade.