The Library Beyond the Library

A plural public space

  • Maurizio Bergamaschi Département de sociologie et droit de l’économie, Université de Bologne
Keywords: public library, public space, users, cultural capital


The public library of Casalecchio di Reno, a small town near Bologna (Italy), is an articulated and multifunctional space, a reference point not only for the municipality but also for the surrounding areas. This library is characterized by multiple spaces and functions, some of which are well-defi ned whilst others less, and diff erent groups of population use it. Together, its low level of regulatory framework, its geographical location and its confi guration as a «public space» make this library both a place of culture and a place of hospitality and friendliness in urban space. By analysing the everyday practices and the concrete actions performed by the subjects, the present study focused on the redefinition of space and on the practices of re-signifi cation, as well as on the manifest or latent needs that underlie such practices.

Author Biography

Maurizio Bergamaschi, Département de sociologie et droit de l’économie, Université de Bologne

Maurizio Bergamaschi est professeur de sociologie urbaine et de sociologie du travail social à l’Université de Bologne, Département de sociologie et droit de l’économie. Coordinateur de la licence en travail sociale à l’Université de Bologne, il a travaillé sur la pauvreté urbaine, notamment sur les sans domicile fi xe en relation à l’espace public et aux politiques publiques. Il a dirigé l’ouvrage I nuovi volti della biblioteca pubblica (Franco Angeli, 2015) et, avec M. Castrignanò, La città contesa. Popolazioni urbane e spazio pubblico tra coesistenza e conflitto (Franco Angeli, 2014).

How to Cite
Bergamaschi, Maurizio. 2016. “The Library Beyond the Library: A Plural Public Space”. Swiss Journal of Sociocultural Anthropology 21 (May):86-95.