Invisible literature, or Through the looking-glass in the library of Babel - Disseminating and curating born digital literary works in the public library’s physical and digital rooms.


Publication date



Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences

Document type


Joint Master Degree in Digital Library Learning (DILL)


The paper analyzes the two case studies, Bergen public library and Roskilde library’s work with born digital literary resources, in light of conversation theory and facilitation theory by Gordon Pask and David R. Lankes. Following the idea of Jacques Derrida’s deconstruction of marginalized areas, digital born literature is the point of thorough investigation from the perspective of its access, knowledge (by library workers and patrons), environment (spatial organization) and motivation (of its usability). The research aim is to draw out best practices in organizing information and knowledge infrastructure for the born digital literary works in physical rooms and digital spaces of public libraries; to diagnose the difficulties and problems in physical and digital facilitation of this type of literature; and to find potential ways and methods to improve its visibility and accessibility by an average public library patron. Some of the highlighted issues discussed in the paper are the librarians’ communication with the research communities and distributed archives, dissemination practices functioning for the purpose of archiving, creative use of physical spaces, library’s presence beyond its walls via creative physical and digital facilitation techniques, digital literature as part of information competence etc. The developed models for facilitating born digital literary works in public libraries are demonstrated and analyzed. The paper is a kick-off research for further investigation of particular issues in digital literature, such as its knowledge organization, hybrid facilitation, preservation and special collection management, among others. The paper concludes with suggestions and advice on potential use of born digital materials and knowledge in public libraries, improvement of services particularly aimed at specific dissemination practices and facilitation as well as on deeper use of digital curatorial activities and curatorial work done for presenting digital born works at physical places. Post-digital environments and hybrid solutions are often discussed. The research is of qualitative nature and follows the two parallel projects at both libraries via interviews, document analysis and observation.


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