Library

The largest special library on religion in the Nordic countries

The Donner Library opened as long ago as 1957 and is today the largest specialist library on religion in the Nordic countries. The library is located in Humanisticum (The Dahlström Palace) at Biskopsgatan 13 in Turku, in the middle of the beautiful Åbo Akademi University campus. The library is open during weekdays between 12.00 and 16.00 (closed in July). Our primary customers are students and researchers of religion, but our library is also open to the general public.

Our collection comprises approximately 90 000 volumes pertaining to research on religion in a broad perspective. The central journals within the field are available in printed form in the library and we can help you to find your way among the e-publications as well.

Book of the month

Ihågkom oss till liv by Joanna Rubin Dranger. Stockholm: Albert Bonniers förlag, 2022.

Joanna Rubin Dranger’s graphic novel Ihågkom oss till liv [Remember Us to Life] was awarded the Nordic Council Literature Prize just before Christmas last year. This is a mammoth of a story: 420 pages in large format, 1.6 kg of beautifully worded text and images. Her book is both a research project, a fictional account and a biographical documentary; a subjective narrative with historical-analytical viability. It is a graphic novel, a historical account, a writer’s diary and a self or family biography in which the narrator’s personal everyday life in contemporary Stockholm is intertwined with world history and the political challenges of our time.

The story also has a clearly displayed and captivating meta-level: the detailed stories of what happened to Rubin Dranger’s Jewish relatives before and during World War II in Sweden, Norway and Eastern Europe are interspersed with scenes in which the author herself becomes visible: she walks in a park with a friend and ponders her justifications for writing this story: what does it matter anymore, will anyone be interested? “Do I even want to know all the things I’m finding out…?” And she lies awake at night, dwelling on thoughts about her grandfather’s sister, who was left behind in Poland with her little son and was unable to protect him when the Nazis came. “I wouldn’t be able to protect my children either,” she thinks. 

Rubin Dranger uses photography, drawing, watercolor and text, and the result is an overwhelming and captivating story that is both fictional and factual.