Wednesday, March 14th, 2012...12:57 am
The Living Library: not your typical library
Last Wednesday I was able to attend “The Living Library Project” held at Hart House. I wasn’t really sure what to expect. Provided was a list of the different “books” with short blurbs about their stories and identities. I signed up for 2 different books – Harla Receno (past leader and organizer of the LGBTQ community on campus) and David Robertson and Peter Ronn (a gay couple who is learning the ropes of being same-sex parents). Given my current involvement with Queer History Month, I thought these “books” might be particularly enlightening.
Started in Denmark as a way to reduce prejudice, intolerance and discrimination, The Human Library Project aims to allow for dialogue between people who otherwise may not encounter each other, or if so, may feel inhibited in the questions they ask. As a result, the “books” chosen occupy spaces that are often misunderstood, or are not always given safe and open spaces for discussion.
The event was amazing! I loved the buzz around the room (it was held in the Great Hall @ Hart House) — it held a casual and friendly energy. To make things even better, I was pleasantly surprised with the fancy spread of appetizers, baked goods, and hot and cold drinks. As the “books” and their “readers” chatted, both nibbled on finger foods or sipped coffees. I feel that this definitely contributed to the relaxed atmosphere overall.
Unfortunately my time was limited for this event, but when (if?) it happens again I’d love to spend more time with different books. If you missed it this year, hopefully it happens again and you too can partake in what I think is one of the coolest experiences I’ve had on campus so far!