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How Launceston’s ‘Living Library’ brings people together

Research shows that we tend to socialise with, befriend and date people like us – people with similar backgrounds and life experiences. This is natural to some extent. We become friends with the people we live close to and go to school with. We find it easier to relate to people with similar experiences to us. It’s a difficult pattern to break out of.

Books are one way that we can bridge this gap. They allow us to see inside the lives of people who are nothing like us – the kinds of people we don’t know in real life but who have incredible stories to tell. In fact, reading has been shown to improve children’s emotional intelligence because of this.

But what if you could just talk to those people? If you could just ask them the questions you really want to know about?

A ‘Living Library’ or ‘Human Library’ is exactly what is sounds like. A ‘library’ of people with unique and interesting experiences. These ‘libraries’ are made up of ‘human books’ who ‘readers’ may talk to and ask questions of. They have become increasingly popular across the globe, including in regional Australia.

On 2NRS we loved the concept and nabbed it for our 2NRS Breakfast segment (here one of our Living Library interviews with a cosplayer), but we wanted to learn more about what real Libraries in regional Australia are actually like.

So we caught up with Aleana Robins from the Launceston Human Library in Tasmania. She is a human book and has been a board member of the Living Library for 6 years.

She was a fascinating person to talk to. Enjoy our conversation with her on 2NRS Breakfast with Liam and Adair!