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Books create a home: exploring books and reading practices as domestic symbols and rituals

Convenors:
Kirsti Salmi-Niklander (University of Helsinki)
Silja Juopperi (University of Tampere)
Stream:
Home
Location:
VG 3.104
Start time:
27 March, 2017 at 8:30
Session slots:
2

Short abstract:

The panel will explore the complex relationship between books and home. Today, digital technologies are changing the role of books. What are the books that people want to keep in their homes, and why? What new practices and rituals of reading can be observed in the 21st century?

Long abstract:

The panel explores the complex relationship between books and home. Books have been an essential part of living-room interiors since the nineteenth century, and they have provided means for demonstrating class, education and ideology. Silent reading and reading aloud have also been a vital part of intimate family life. Today, digital technologies are changing the role of books and bookshelves. What are the books that people still want to keep in their homes, and why? What new practices and rituals of reading can be observed in the 21st century? How has the e-book affected the role of books and reading at home? Voluntary or forced migrations give new meanings to books and reading. Migrants and refugees can most often take a minimal amount of material goods with them. Which books are carried in the luggage as symbols of home? What kinds of old and new reading practices can be observed in immigrant communities? Libraries have served as "alternative homes" especially for workers and immigrants, who often have had limited means to buy books and limited possibilities for reading in peace. How are the domestic features of libraries experienced and discussed? How have librarians reacted to these expectations? Reading practices and books as material objects interest scholars in the fields of ethnology, folklore studies, book history, linguistics and information studies. In our session, we are going to promote multi-disciplinary discussion on these questions.