Answered By: Elyse Wolf
Last Updated: Feb 07, 2018     Views: 88

Human Library

What is a Human Library?  

Started in Denmark in 2000, the Human Library is a global project created with the intention of challenging perspectives which may contribute to misunderstanding, prejudice, and discrimination.  A Human Library provides a safe space for conversation, creating dialogue among participants, bringing people together to learn from each other.

What is a Human Book? 

A Human Book is someone who has volunteered to share their experiences with others, telling their stories and answering questions about their life.  Volunteer books are individuals from all walks of life who have experienced discrimination or marginalization based upon some aspect of their identity or lived experience  - their race, religion, sexual orientation, class, gender identity, occupation, sex, age, lifestyle choices, disability or other aspects of life - and who want to share their experiences to promote knowledge and challenge stigma surrounding their identity.

How does it work? 

Similar to any other library, attendees (or “readers”) browse through a catalog of human “books” and select the book they would like to learn more about.  Once a selection has been made, books and readers will sit down for a 15 minute one-on-one conversation.  Readers may ask questions and learn about the life and experiences of the book.  At the end of the loan period, the book is “returned” and the reader may choose another book for check-out, if time allows.

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