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ACU Human Library

Find out about the ACU Human Library -- what it is, why it is important, and how you can take part.

ACU Human Library

Tuesday 4 April 2023, Brisbane and Blacktown Campus Libraries


human Library, unjudge someone logo.


You can't judge a book by its cover. It's the same with people. What you see is rarely a complete picture of who they are.

Human Libraries provide an opportunity for individuals from different backgrounds to connect with, talk and learn from each other in a safe environment. They provide an opportunity for readers to recognise the deep human dignity in every person and broaden perspectives through the process of borrowing a Human Book for a 20 minute conversation about their lived experience. 

Human Books are volunteers from all walks of life, who are willing to share their personal stories. Human Books often represent groups in our society that are misunderstood or subjected to prejudice, discrimination, exclusion or stigma because of their lifestyle, belief, disability, economic or health status, ethnic origin, gender, sexuality, age, neurodiversity, gender identity, mental health or life experience

At a Human Library participants borrow a Human Book for up to 20 minutes at a time in order to have a conversation, ask questions about the book's topic and get to know another individual.

How does a Human Library work?

Just like a normal library, books will be available to borrow, engage with and learn from.

Except in this instance, the books are real people with unique personal experiences or perspectives that they are willing to share with readers.

Readers select and register book title/s that they would like to converse with before the event. During the event, Human Books and their readers sit down for a 20 minute one-on-one chat. Readers may ask questions and learn about the life and experiences of the Human Book. At the end of the loan period, the book is ‘returned’ and available for the next borrower.

Contact and more information

The Human Library is an international movement that was started in Denmark in 2000. It is designed to build a positive framework for conversations that can challenge stereotypes and prejudices through dialogue. Since that time, hundreds of Human Library events have been held around the world.

Visit the Human Library Organisation for more information.

For queries about the ACU Human Library email

Guide last reviewed: 3 Nov 2022