Why does the library collect immigrants’ memories? A study of a multicultural memory group at a public library in Oslo

Ulvik, Synnøve Why does the library collect immigrants’ memories? A study of a multicultural memory group at a public library in Oslo., 2009 . In 17th annual BOBCATSSS symposium (Bobcatsss 2009), Porto (Portugal), 28-30 January 2009. (Unpublished) [Conference paper]


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English abstract

The paper contents a presentation of the work of a multicultural memory group at the Torshov branch of Oslo public library, the reasons why the library initiated this work, and the expectations connected to the results. The memory group is part of a larger project at Oslo University College, Department of Journalism, Library and Information Science, PLACE, aiming at investigating the library as a physical meeting place. Immigrants in Norway use public libraries frequently, but there is little communication between them and native Norwegians. Libraries can be important arenas for integration when groups of people from different cultures meet and communicate. Activities organized by the library, like this memory group, can make a change. It is considered especially important to recruit women. This paper aims to show that a memory group situated in the library can contribute to the building of bridges between people with different cultural backgrounds. Other effects of the work can be the creation of stronger feeling of belonging in the local community, increased self confidence and language skills. All this is important to obtain information literacy and thus be able to take part in the society. This paper emphasizes on the importance of public libraries as physical meeting places. The method used by the memory group is reminiscence work. Reminiscence is the act or process of recalling and sharing one’s memories. Using the library as an arena for reminiscence work among immigrants is new. If successful, the work can be a model for other public libraries. The group has not yet completed its work, but is aiming at an exhibition as a visible documentation of the work.

Item type: Conference paper
Keywords: Immigrants, Refugees, Memories, Reminiscence Work, Public Libraries, Integration, The PLACE Project, Social Capital
Subjects: C. Users, literacy and reading. > CC. User categories: children, young people, social groups.
B. Information use and sociology of information > BH. Information needs and information requirements analysis.
Depositing user: 2009 Bobcatsss
Date deposited: 19 Mar 2009
Last modified: 02 Oct 2014 12:13
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10760/12871


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