Living Books Tell Their Stories On Saturday at Fayetteville Public Library

Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette  September 7, 2018

18 local residents will be part of the first Human Library event in Northwest Arkansas, based on programs run twenty years ago in Denmark. Organizer Katherine Ganoung says that the Human Library is a chance to bring “storytelling power back to those who lived out their story every day and wanted to share their experience to break down stereotypes and stigmas around who they are.”

Willow Fitzgibbon, director of library services, says that “participants can sign up for as many ‘books’ as time allows and have a 10-minute session with their selected book to talk about a given subject.”

Ganoung, a graduate student in the department of communication at the University of Arkansas, says this program matches the focus of her work: Using “storytelling as a lever for communication and civic engagement.”

“Fayetteville has been moving in the direction of diversity, inclusion and understanding with policies and people advocating for those community rights,” she says. “The Human Library platform seemed like a necessary and tangible next step in bringing those principals to life. And what better place than Fayetteville Public Library, a community hub that is open, accessible and welcome to all to engage with stories beyond their own?”

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