Synopsis of the 4th annual Human Library

34 human books (students, staff, faculty, alumni and community members) volunteered to share their personal stories with over 420 readers (aka attendees) at the Human Library on Thursday, November 8th 2019. Conversations between books and readers took place across the main floor of the Library, while an ever-growing line queued up to talk to the next available book.

Each participant completed a reflection post conversation. One reader said "each person is fighting an internal battle, big or small, that you may not be aware of and that you should disregard stereotypes and be open to others experiences and opinions." Many also echoed this sentiment: "The most important take away from my conversation was to never judge a book by its cover because everyone has something special to offer."

Thank you to all our human books for making the Human Library a tremendous success! We are grateful for the generous sharing of their stories that ultimately helped break down stereotypes and prejudices AND highlight some of the diversity in our community. This year there was an increase of books discussing topics related to disabilities and mental health. Books also spoke about religion, immigration, LGBT activism, homelessness, addiction, sexual abuse, among many other topics.

The line waiting to speak with a human book

The Human Library is an international movement that started in Denmark in the year 2000 and has since made its way through over 80 countries. Human Library at Fairfield University was created with the permission of the Human Library Organization.

Thank you also to the 2019 Human Library sponsors and committee members from the following departments: Office of Student Engagement; Student Diversity and Multicultural Association; Campus Ministry; Center for Faith and Public Life; Counseling & Psychological Services; Marketing & Communications; Office of the Provost; The Murphy Center for Ignatian Spirituality; Athletics; and faculty members across disciplines.