Human Library

Returning for a with triumphant year, 30 new human books await their “readers” at the Vancouver Public Library. Check out a book, discover a person.

Created by Stop the Violence (Copenhagen)

Curated by Dave Deveau & Adele Noronha

Produced by Emily Neumann

Presented with VPL and The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

Enter the Vancouver Public Library’s Central Branch and head up to the third floor where a special circulation desk will register you with your own Human Library card and offer to lend you one of thirty possible human books. In choosing from titles like “Invisibly Disabled” and “In Polygamy’s Shadow”  you’ll sign one out and be connected to the person behind that title. A one-on-one, twenty minute informal conversation will begin and the rest is up to you.

By connecting people who under normal circumstances might not have had a chance to sit down and talk, the library enables groups to break stereotypes by challenging common prejudices in a positive and humorous manner.

“A paper book exists in the finite space of printed text and internalized reading. A human book, however, exists in the real four-dimensional scope of human experience. The reader can’t skip bits or neglect their book, a human book requires fixed attention and, through that intimate engagement with another’s story, invites empathy through real human engagement” –Interface

“A very good read” –Jerry Wasserman, Vancouver Province

Human Library was started by a group of five individuals who founded the organization Stop The Violence after a brutal attack on a mutual friend. The first Human Library was held in Denmark in 2000 and the concept has since gained huge popularity and momentum. Over the past twelve years in over sixty-five countries, thousands of “human books” have connected with “readers” of all walks of life.
January 20-21, January 27-28, February 3-4, 12pm to 4pm
Vancouver Public Library Central Branch, 350 West Georgia Street

A free event. First come, first served. Arrive early to avoid disappointment.

Checking out commences at 11:30. The final reading of the day starts at 3:30.

Zee Zee Theatre acknowledges that we live and work on the unceded traditional and ancestral territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.