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Libraries’ potential for developing readers’ identities (the example of Ufa)

Research Article

Pavel V. Fadeev Candidate of Sociology
Institute of Sociology of FCTAS RAS, Moscow, Russia
ORCID ID=0000-0001-5767-0329
Libraries’ potential for developing readers’ identities (the example of Ufa).
Vestnik instituta sotziologii. 2019. Vol. 10. No. 4. P. 36-54

Дата поступления статьи: 07.09.2019
This Article is downloaded: 280 times
Topic: Ethnicity in a multicultural world

For citation:
Fadeev P. V. Libraries’ potential for developing readers’ identities (the example of Ufa). Vestnik instituta sotziologii. 2019. Vol. 10. No. 4. P. 36-54
DOI: https://doi.org/10.19181/vis.2019.31.4.603


Events held by libraries under the guise of state national policy bear special meaning for the republic of Bashkortostan. Libraries are gradually transforming into centers where one can not only read literature, but also receive complementary services and spend their free time productively. The extent to which this idea is implemented in all of Bashkortostan’s libraries depends on funding. This article attempts to understand the influence of libraries on forming the identities of readers. The central Zeki Velidi Togan National Library, as well as district libraries numbers 23 and 4 served as the object for our research. The design of each of these libraries primarily serves national (Bashkortostani) identity, while possessing certain foreign elements (Ufa, Russian, Soviet, Bashkir). A common trend appears to be the stable abundance of books about Salavat Yulaev – one of the symbols of the republic. Compared to the others, the central library holds considerably more events than any district library. Most events held by the central library are aimed at developing and sustaining Bashkir identity. Bashkir language is used during many gatherings, while the primary audience of thematic evenings is comprised of Bashkirs (there tend to be less Tatars and Russians present at these events). Ufa, Tatar and religious identities are almost completely absent from the events conducted by the National library. District libraries work in several directions simultaneously: working with troubled youth, moral education, local history, fields such as aesthetics, ecology etc. Evens held by district libraries are more diverse and correlate with the holiday calendar. Both district libraries evaluated provide books in several languages, however, the bulk of those books are written in Russian. Meanwhile books in Bashkir and Tatar are in somewhat less demand, due to their irrelevance (they are mostly read by national language students and teachers, of which there are not too many), and a lack of popular literature written in national languages.


library, state-civil identity, republican and ethnic identity, interethnic relations


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