School Libraries as the “Third Place”

Research English OPEN
KUNO, Kazuko (2011)
  • Publisher: Lifelong Education and Libraries, Graduate School of Education, Kyoto University
  • Journal: Lifelong education and libraries, volume 11, pages 109-118 (issn: 1346-2288)
  • Subject: School libraries | Third place | Ray Oldenburg | Robert D. Putnam | Social capital

American Sociologist Ray Oldenburg emphasized the importance of informal public gathering places as he named the "third place" where people can enjoy good company and conversation. According to Oldenburg, The "third place" is necessary and important for the community and individuals because it encourages many social and personal benefits. Recently, many researchers of library science have paid great attention to the topic or the framework of "the library as place," and some of them have deliberately tried to examine the role and significance of libraries as the "third place" for serving the communities. This paper investigates how successful school libraries may serve as the "third place" for students and faculties as well as how libraries support and enrich their school life holistically.
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