Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover - Human Library 2013

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

On January 24th, 25th and 26th 2013, Winnipeg Public Library, CBC, and the Canadian Museum for Human Rights will be co-hosting a Human Library at Winnipeg Public Library’s Millennium Branch (251 Donald St.).


Kathleen Williams, Administrative Coordinator of Community Outreach and Marketing (left) and Holly Moore from CBC (right), Human Library co-coordinators

Stephen Carney

Stephen Carney, CMHR Librarian


What is a Human Library?

In the year 2000, at the Roskilde music festival in Denmark, event organizers introduced an innovative way of getting people to talk about discrimination, prejudice and stereotyping: The Human Library.

At a Human Library, people are the books, and patrons borrow them for 30 minute conversations. The books are volunteers who have been brought together to share their stories, to answer and ask questions, and to engage their readers in conversation. While each book is unique, they share in common the experience of having in some way lived with discrimination, prejudice or stereotyping.


Human Books

Human Books from the Winnipeg Human Library Catalogue


Human Libraries represent a chance for people to challenge their own stereotypes and prejudices and to learn from the experiences of others by engaging in dialogue with their selected books.

Why a Human Library?

The principles behind a Human Library speak to the Museum’s mandate of increasing the public's understanding of human rights, of promoting respect for others, and for encouraging reflection and dialogue. Partnering with like-minded organizations on events such as this allows us to participate in events that support the Museum’s mandate of dialogue prior to the Museum’s opening.

The Human Library 2013 edition features 30 books over 3 days. Library patrons can check out each book for 15 to 30 minute conversations. The books come from a wide cross–section of Canadian society, and each one is ready to share his or her story. Go to http://wpl.winnipeg.ca/library/humanlibrary.asp for information on how to borrow a Human Book and for the Catalogue of Human Books.


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