Treść głównego artykułu


This paper sets out my acquaintance with the work of ESREA since 2016, my reading about autobiographical research and the development of my ideas for a study of The Companionship of Books or what is now known as bibliotherapy. I have defined this as how reading books can help to make us feel better. The paper looks at what kind of books this might be and suggests that most may be found in the area of literature, although not exclusively so, and other types such as autobiography or natural history books are suggested. Theories underpinning bibliotherapy are put forward both by literary specialists and by psychotherapists. The views of my own literature students are also set out and examined as are my own views. I refer to my own early experiences of the restorative power found in literature, particularly poetry, and this is referred to as part of a longer autoethnographic enquiry into the subject which this paper is the preface to. A number of personal stories relating to reading books for assistance in difficult times are referred to, again poetry featuring significantly, but also the value of libraries in supporting and enabling individuals to survive life’s rigors. Finally, a parliamentary report is mentioned, referring to the role of the arts in general as a source of improving our mental wellbeing and the contribution to played by two of its proponents in furthering this aim. In my conclusion the importance of adult education is stressed in ensuring that The Companionship of books can help us to progress in a post-pandemic world.

Słowa kluczowe

serendipity oikology household autoethnography autobiography bibliotherapy

Szczegóły artykułu

Jak cytować
Leyland, P. (2021). The Companionship of Books. Teraźniejszość – Człowiek – Edukacja, 23(2(90), 105-121.


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