Can Kafka Subway Billboards Boost Literacy in Mexico? [Headlines]
One of Mexico City's largest book retailers has partnered with the transportation authority to place excerpts from a Kafka story in 13 of the city's subway stations.
Can Franz Kafka’s short story “The Bridge” turn subway riders in Mexico City into avid readers? That’s the hope of a new literacy awareness campaign from Librerías Gandhi, one of Mexico’s largest book retailers. The bookstore has teamed up with the city’s transportation authority to place billboards, each featuring an excerpt from the story, in 13 stations along the subway’s yellow line.
Data from UNICEF shows that Mexico’s adult literacy rate is 93 percent, which is pretty good compared to other countries. However, just because someone can read doesn’t mean they ever crack a book. According to Librerías Gandhi, the average Mexican only reads 2.7 books per year. Literacy advocates hopes that riders will see the text while commuting to work and get inspired to read more.