Living libraries: Guidelines for Books

Guidelines Preparation

  • Catalogue identification of the subjects and the sub -categories of the potential groups. It is important to define the kind of catalogue that we want to present. The catalogue will be relevant to the country and the city of origin where the event is taking place.
  • Brainstorming to know which kind of books we aim to present and to make a list of different organizations in order to create a network that can help us in reaching out the potential books  
  • Getting to know the books and introduce the idea of the project to them and share with them what are our expectations and the desirable outcomes.
  • Follow- up session/s in regard to know the stories of the books and try to make an evaluation on how to make the story more concrete and fits the aim the of the project. Explain the details of the project, explore the possible outcomes of the story.
  • Finalize the details of the story with the books and it must be made sure (by the organizers/facilitators/librarians) that the books do not carry any trauma, or have been recently exposed to a dangerous situations and that more or less have a stabilized life.
    The book should not try to victimize themselves to others, or be manipulative in any way, or try to make the readers feel sorry for their story. The book should not have a violent or offended reaction (frustration outbursts) in case a participant wants to end the session earlier than scheduled.
  • The stereotype should be obviously presented.
  • Explanatory dery details , story evaluation, books requirement, finalization preparation of a human book (trauma, pity, victimization, frustration, stereotype)


  • Arranging translators during the event for the books who only speak their native language.
  • Rehearsal of the story: books must come earlier during the event day in order to do a rehearsal with the organizing team in order to be prepared and ready.
  • Time off (food, water, w/c, relax): books must be provided with drink, and have breaks in between each sessions books have the rights to get breaks, go to toilet in order to be relaxed and not to be stressed during the event.
  • Safety signals: the books and the librarians will be given signals that they will use when un unexpected event arises, for example (gesture, sound)
  • Accommodation, comfortable pleasant place, well equipped.
  • Time-schedule, respect the schedule of the activities (books, break, lunch etct)
  • Personal rights for books, participants of the event must respect the persona details of the book such as taking photos or videos.
  • Security: take the necessary measures to provide a safety environment for the books.

Guidelines Evaluation :

-After-feel: it is important to talk with the books at the end of the event.

-Format preparation and evaluation sheet that consist of reflexions and expectations from the books.

-Books will give their recommendations.

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