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Examining Arab and Muslim librarians in fiction

Scholars sitting at an Abbasid library.
Scholars at an Abbasid library. Illustration by Yahyá al-Wasiti in 1237 entitled “Maqamat of al-Hariri”, downloaded from Wikimedia.

This month is Arab-American Heritage Month, which recognizes the contributions Arab-Americans have made to the U.S. In that vein, I’d like to highlight some fictional librarians who are Arabs, Muslims, and others in real life for this post.

First, I’d like to point out some facts. Currently there are, according to Arab America, over 3.5 million Arab Americans in the U.S., an inexact number since they are not recognized as a minority group on the federal level, 90% of whom live in urban areas. Furthermore, 66% of them live in 10 states, and 33% live in a few states: California, Michigan, New York, and New Jersey. 40% even have a bachelor’s degree or higher, showing high educational attainment. There are various stories which can be read. There is a Arab/Middle Eastern librarian listed by Jennifer Snoek-Brown in 2017 on her site, Reel Librarians: Erick Avari as Dr. Terrence Bey in The Mummy (1999). This film, unfortunately, has wretched stereotypes of Arabs, which some have examined, noting Egyptian workers are shown as “disposable, frightened props”, with some calling it an anti-Arab film and a “racist masterpiece” that is a “consummate example of bigotry”. It was so bad, that there is the story of Amir El Bayoumi, a young Egyptian-American who has originally signed onto the film, left the movie set, arguing that it was a “blatant humiliation” of his culture. [1] On the other hand are real-life Arab-American librarians like Ghada Kanafini Elturk, a person of Lebanese descent who was working as a librarian in Boulder, Colorado in September 2001, or the director of Morrow Library at Marshall University, Majed Khader, who was born in Jordan. There’s others who speak Arabic but are American and live in the Mideast like librarian David Hirsch.

Beyond this is author Ameen F. Rihani (1876-1940). He is first American with Arab heritage to “devote himself to writing literature, to publish a novel in English,” and author of Arab descent “to write English essays, poetry, novels, short stories, art critiques and travel chronicles.” That’s just one example. This differs from the issues and struggles that librarians, in the Arab world, have to deal with, distinct from those in the U.S., obviously. The late Lebanese-American scholar and journalist Jack G. Shaheen in one of his seminal works, Reel Bad Arabs, defines Arabs as the hundreds of millions of people who reside in, and the millions around the world in the diaspora, from 22 Arab states (Algeria, Bahrain, Chad, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen). Shaheen also notes that many English words, like algebra, chemistry, and coffee, have English roots, while Arab intellectuals made it possible for Western scholars to practice and develop “advanced educational systems.” Arabs also pioneered water works, irrigation, measuring latitude and longitude, invented the water clock, and were advanced in astronomical discoveries, along with the concept of gravity and tradition of legal learning which Jews played an important role in. Arabs have lifestyles which defy stereotyping, which has endured for centuries, especially in Europe. [2]

While there are some assorted fictional librarians who are Arabs, like an unnamed librarian in a puzzle game, more of them exist in real-life than any in fiction. Consider the Muslim woman, writer, and librarian Essraa Nawar, an Islamic school librarian named Kirin, or the eight Muslim librarians behind Hijabi Librarians, a site which reviews young adult and children’s literature featuring Muslim communities and characters. Unfortunately, even a search on their website pulls up very few Arab or Muslim librarians, other than Yasmin the Librarian, a Pakistani American second-grader. Further searches pulled up many more books, however. Nour, the protagonist of Nour’s Secret Library, and her friend, go a library named Fajr, in Syria, collecting books to stock shelves and checking out books, even making their own secret library. Additionally, there’s Alia’s Mission: Saving the Books of Iraq, which is based on the story of a Muslim woman who saved 30,000 books from destruction during the Iraq War, or the story of Alia Muhammad Baker, a librarian in Basra, Iraq, in the book The librarian of Basra. [3]

There are further library scenes in other books with Muslim characters. In You Can Control Your Voice: Loud or Quiet? You Choose the Ending, the protagonist can stay a longer time or shorter time in the library depending on how loud or quiet she is. In Lailah’s Lunchbox, a school librarian encourages the Muslim protagonist to express herself. In Little Badman and the Invasion of the Killer Aunties, which has a Pakistani Muslim protagonist, a slug comes out of a substitute librarian. In Layla’s Head Scarf, a librarian gives Layla, the Muslim protagonist, a book about her country. In Zaynab and Zakariya Learn to Recycle, the protagonists reach out to their parents in the library to learn about recycling. Also, in Muktar and the Camels, the Somali Muslim protagonist becomes a traveling librarian who rides a camel and in The Library Bus, Pari and her mother takes education on the road with a library bus in Afghanistan. The same author of the latter book wrote another about Afghans, titled A Sky-Blue Bench, focused on a disabled young girl. Despite these books, however, there is still a general lack of Muslim and Arab librarians, which sadly isn’t a surprise considering the lack of Muslim librarians in librarianship as a whole. [4]

When it comes to real librarians who are Muslims, Arabs, or both, there are scattered blogs and resources online, either of those in the West, Mideast or elsewhere. Others shared history of libraries in Spain, during the Islamic golden age, how a novel by Geraldine Brooks’s People of the Book is based on a “true story of an ancient Jewish codex saved from the fire by a Muslim librarian”, a Black Muslim librarian sparing the interest of José “Cha Cha” Jiménez in social justice and leading him to found the Young Lords Party. Some scholars argued that progress achieved by Muslims in science “during the caliphate was greatly supported by the existence of libraries”. [5] Others pointed out that historians divided the libraries in the early centuries of Islam into three types: public (schools or mosques), semi-public (only open to a specific group) and private (owned by scholars and for their personal needs) libraries. The greatness of these libraries was recorded by Ibn Sina and others, noting libraries with tens of thousands of volumes.

Children's section of Azadi library in Karkhark village, Iran
Children’s section of Azadi library in Karkhark village, Iran. Image by Saadatnia95, posted on Wikimedia, Feb. 17, 2017

There were further stories on heroic Islamic librarians and the Muslim women who restored an old library in Morocco. Others worked to combat stereotypes, met together with other Muslim librarians, or provided history of past libraries. Some have even proposed Islamic classification schemes or used a revised version of the Dewey Decimal System (DDC). Some scholars pointed to the role of Islamic librarianship,  noting that Islamic knowledge traditions raised librarians as so-called “knowledge workers” and scholars, and became a manifestation of their faith. This interconnects with the association of librarianship with what is sacred, religious, and even seeing librarians as priests. It may even be part of what some claimed was the “great borderless empire” of libraries which have the power to build civilization and have a “special place of honor” in society. There is also the role of WCOMLIS, the World Congress of Muslim Librarians and Information Scientists, which appears to meet every year, and Islamic ethical codes, which some argue can be applied in library settings. [6]

Through it all there is the continued problem of low productivity of Arab librarians in contributing scholarship. This is in part with very few Arabic library journals, difficulties in determining how many librarians there in the Arab world, and a gender gap. The scholar Mahmoud Sherif Zakaria found that men published almost 83% of the articles in Arabic journals, while women published the other 17%, rooted in the fact that women may not have the time to publish or develop their research skills. The author concluded that the proportion of contributions of Arab librarians to the library literature “seems weak” and called for further scholarship from such librarians to promote professional library staff, and strengthen / gain professional and research recognition in the academic community” [7]

Rashid Siddiqui, a scholar at the University of Leichester in the UK, called for, in 1988, the Islamizing of librarianship with Islamic-based classification systems. In his four-page article, he argued, with merit, that “library science, as developed in the West, is bound to reflect the image of Western civilization. Subject classification, the rules for cataloguing, lists of subject headings and other techniques employed to exploit literature all portray the Western way of life.” He pointed out that there was trouble at cataloging Muslim authors with librarians continuing to follow “Anglo- American cataloguing rules”, argued that the DDC had an “American and Christian bias”, pointed to lack of bibliographical indexes and bias within “Western bibliographic data” has led to problems. He concluded by calling for Islamizing librarianship to open up “avenues of knowledge”, to make sure Islamic scholarship and learning is recognized. [8]

Hopefully, in the future, there are characters who are Muslims, Arabs, or both, which are librarians. It is more likely in Western animation and webcomics than anime, as the latter medium continues to be a bit of a monolith and lacks in representation of characters beyond Japanese culture for the most part. This is mainly the case due to the ethnic composition of Japan itself. After all, librarians have been said to influence young adult fiction trends, influence what teens read, can promote diversity, and libraries hold key places in neighborhoods, including in the Black community, but undoubtedly elsewhere too. [9]

With that, I conclude this post and hope to find more characters in the future which I can write about on this blog and share with you all. As always, comments on this post are welcome.

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] Shaheen, Jack G. Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People (New York: Olive Branch Press, 2001), 9, 333-335

[2] Ibid, 2-3, 6-7, 11, 539.

[3] “Arab Librarian.” edu-fun store Egypt. Accessed June 20, 2022; Peters, Alison. “Cool Stuff Diverse Librarians Do.” Book Riot, Feb. 5, 2016; Younus, Zainab bint. “Muslim Bookstagram Awards: A Chat With An Islamic School Librarian.” Muslim Matters, Mar. 19, 2022; “Bios.” Hijabi Librarians. Accessed June 20, 2022; “About Us.” Hijabi Librarians. Accessed June 20, 2022; “Favorite Books of 2021.” Hijabi Librarians, Feb. 2, 2022; Kirin, “Nour’s Secret Library by Wafa’ Tarnowska illustrated by Vali Mintzi.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Dec. 29, 2021; Kirin, “Alia’s Mission: Saving the Books of Iraq by Mark Alan Stamaty.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Sept. 25, 2020; Kirin. “Non-Fiction.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian. Accessed June 20, 2022; “The librarian of Basra.” Diverse Book Finder. Accessed June 20, 2022; Kirin. “The Librarian of Basra: A True Story from Iraq By Jeanette Winter.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Jul. 26, 2015. Also see Mahasin and Ariana, “Evaluating Muslims in KidLit: A Guide for Librarians, Educators, and Reviewers,” Hijabi Librarians, Oct. 3, 2020; “Welcome to Hijabi Librarians!Hijabi Librarians, June 15, 2018; “Author Interview: Sana Rafi.” Hijabi Librarians, Mar. 13, 2022; Aleem, Mahasin Abuwi. “Interview with Author Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow.” Hijabi Librarians, Feb. 10, 2019; “Saffron Ice Cream: A Book Discussion.” Hijabi Librarians, Aug. 15, 2018; Salamah, Hadeal. “Author Interview: Rukhsana Khan.” Hijabi Librarians, Aug. 11, 2018; “Author and Illustrator Interview: Saadia Faruqi and Hatem Aly.” Hijabi Librarians, Jul. 31, 2018; “Author Interview: Hena Khan.” Hijabi Librarians, Jun. 14 2018; “Author Interview: Alexis York Lumbard.” Hijabi Librarians, Jun. 12, 2018; “Blogroll.” Hijabi Librarians. Accessed June 20, 2022; “Advocacy, Grants and Scholarships, and Research.” Hijabi Librarians. Accessed June 20, 2022; “PK-12 Resources.” Hijabi Librarians. Accessed June 20, 2022; “Books.” Hijabi Librarians. Accessed June 20, 2022.

[4] Kirin, “You Can Control Your Voice: Loud or Quiet? You Choose the Ending by Connie Colwell Miller illustrated by Victoria Assanelli.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Mar. 2, 2020; Kirin, “Little Badman and the Invasion of the Killer Aunties by Humza Arshad & Henry White illustrated by Aleksei Bitskoff.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Oct. 25, 2019; “Lailah’s lunchbox.” Diverse Book Finder. Accessed June 20, 2022; Kirin, “Lailah’s Lunchbox: A Ramadan Story by Reem Faruqi illustrated by Lea Lyon.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Jul. 7, 2016; Kirin, “Layla’s Head Scarf by Miriam Cohen illustrated by Ronald Himler.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Dec. 10, 2018; Kirin, “Zaynab and Zakariya Learn to Recycle by Fehmida Ibrahim Shah.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Dec. 10, 2018; “Muktar and the camels.” Diverse Book Reader. Accessed June 20, 2022; Kirin, “Muktar and the Camels by Janet Graber illustrated by Scott Mack.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Feb. 2, 2018; Kirin, “The Library Bus by Bahram Rahman illustrated by Gabrielle Grimard.” Notes from an Islamic School Librarian, Apr. 14, 2021; “The Library Bus.” Diverse Book Reader. Accessed June 20, 2022; “A Sky-Blue Bench.” Diverse Book Reader. Accessed June 20, 2022. “2020 Ramadan Reads: Recommended Books.” Hijabi Librarians, May 18, 2020; “How and Why We Started this Site and Why We Chose Our Name.” Hijabi Librarians, June 10, 2018. There’s also a mention of a library being built in David Macaulay’s Mosque. Additionally, the books The Most Pleasant Festival of Sacrifice: Little Barul’s Eid Celebration, Alana’s Bananas, Rashid and the Haupmann Diamond (there’s library research) which are by Muslim authors and have Muslim characters all have library scenes. Kirin also noted that some people would criticize a Muslim character’s identifying as LGBTQ and others “angered by my mentioning of them as potential flags”. She also noted in one review about reserving “recommendations to college age”.

[5] Blogger Profile. Muslim Librarian in Amman. Blogger, Google. Accessed June 20, 2022; “Home.” Muslim Librarian in Amman. Accessed June 20, 2022; “Home.” Early Muslim libraries in Spain. Accessed June 20, 2022; Ursula K Le Guin. “The shelf-life of shadows.” The Guardian, Jan. 28, 2008; Reichard, Raquel. “5 Things History Books Won’t Tell You About the Young Lords’ Activism.” Remezcla, Sept. 26, 2018; Antonio, Muhammad Syafii, Aam Slamet Rusydiana, Yayat Rahmat Hidayat, Dwi Ratna Kartikawati, and Amelia Tri Puspita. “Librarian in Islamic Civilization.” Library Philosophy and Practice, Dec. 3, 2021, p. 15-18.On the final page, it notes librarians in the history of Islamic civilization, including Al-Nadim, Abd al-Salam ibn al-Hasan ibn Muhammad al-Bashri, Al-Qayrawani, Abu Abdullah Muhammad bin al-Hasan bin Zarrarah al-Tha’I, al-Ukhbari, and al-Wasithi. This latter name sees to be different from the Arab painter and calligrapher Yahya ibn Mahmud al-Wasiti, while Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani may have been different from Al-Qayrawani mentioned in the article. However, Ibn al-Nadim is the same as Al-Nadim mentioned in the article, with his Wikipedia page noting his role in libraries. The “Libraries of the Muslim World (859-2000)” page which is mentioned in the next note, points to Ibn Miskawayh who headed the Library of Abu’l-Fadl ibn al-‘Amid in Shiraz, a public library in Bukhara, librarians in Islamic Spanish cities like Dar al-Kitabat getting a salary, Amir Khusraw having a valued position as a librarian in the Sultanate of Delhi, chief librarians of libraries in Mughal India, director and librarians of the Library of Zayb al Nisa, chief librarians in an Indian royal library in Rampur, and librarians of the National Library of Pakistan. That is only scratching the surface.

[6] Brooks, Geraldine. “The Book of Exodus.” The New Yorker, Dec. 3, 2007; Breeding, Jordan, Brittini Patterson, and Kian Lastman. “5 Amazing Acts Of Mercy Toward Horrible People.”, Jun. 25, 2017; Fugard, Lisa. “All the World’s a Page.” New York Times, Jan. 20, 2008; Werft, Meghan. “Meet The 2 Muslim Women Who Built & Restored The World’s First Library.” Global Citizen, Jul. 27, 2016; “Librarian Combats Muslim Stereotypes.” LISNews, Jan. 14, 2009; “Muslim Librarians to Meet in Malaysia.” LISNews, Oct. 6, 2008; Virk, Zakaria. “Libraries of the Muslim World (859-2000).” Muslim Heritage, Nov. 26, 2019; Wong, Megan A. “A comic about truth, justice, and the Islamic way.” Christian Science Monitor, Apr. 25, 2007, excerpted on LISNews; “The Catalogues of the Queen of Sheba.”, Apr. 29, 2009; Monastra, Yahya. (1996). “The Fourth Congress of Muslim Librarians and Information Scientists.” American Journal of Islam and Society, Vol. 13, No. 1, 133-134; Khaldi, Omar. (1989) “Third Conference of Council of Muslim Librarians and Information Scientists (COMLIS III).” The American Journal of Islam and Society, Vol. 6, No. 1, 185-186; “Libraries.” Oxford Islamic Studies Online. Accessed June 20, 2022; “Muslim Journeys and Your Community: Managing Controversy, Maximizing Impact.” Programming Librarian, Oct. 24, 2013; Molazem, Nola. “An Islamic Directory of Library and Information Professional Ethic Codes” [Abstract]. Researchgate, 2011; Baharuddin, Mohammad Fazli and Shaharom TM Sulaiman(2015). “The Challenges of Strengthening Islamic Librarianship: Retrospect History to Shape the Future,” Journal of Information and Knowledge Management, Vol. 5, No. 2, 23-29. Also see: “I’m a librarian who banned a book. Here’s why” There’s also various stock photography and videos, like “Medium slowmo of Muslim female librarian in eyeglasses and headscarf talking to African American university student with disability sitting in wheelchair by wooden desk reading thick book” on storyblocks, “Portrait of cheerful Asian muslim female librarian wearing hijab, smiling crossed arms confidence gesture against book shell in library stock video” on iStock, “Portrait of cheerful Asian muslim female librarian wearing hijab and smiling, woman standing against books in library” on Adobe Stock, “Portrait of cheerful Asian muslim female librarian wearing hijab, looking at camera and smiling, woman standing against books in library” on alamy.

[7] Zakaria, Mahmoud Sherif (2015). “Scholarly productivity of Arab librarians in Library and Information Science journals from 1981 to 2010:.” IFLA Journal, Vol. 41, No. 1, 72-78. For more on the IFLA Journal, see here.

[8] Siddiqui, Rashid. (1988) “The Intellectual Role of Islamizing Librarianship.” The American Jounal of Islamic Social Sciences, Vol. 5, No. 2, 275-278. Link to abstract is here.

[9] Eldemerdash, Nadia. “Why YA Literature Leads The Pack In Muslim Representation.” Headscarves and Hardbacks, Jun. 26, 2017; Nadia, “Stop Telling Teenagers What They Should Be Reading.” Headscarves and Hardbacks, Mar. 5, 2017; Nicole, Angie. “Our Stories Matter 1st Annual African American Read-In.” Black Children’s Books and Authors, Mar. 1, 2017; “What’s Your Story?: Jacquelyn Randle: Founder of C & E Reflections Inc.Black Children’s Books and Authors, Nov. 10, 2021. There is one article which intersects both, a chapter by Rebecca Hankins entitled “Racial Realism of Foolish Optimism: An African American Muslim Woman in the Field” in Where Are All The Librarians of Color?: The Experiences of People of Color (ed. Rebecca Hankins and Miguel Juarez, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA, 2015), which I mentioned in my post in February about real life Black librarians who should also be in fiction. She pointed out, on page 213 that there are only a “few African American women who lead academic librarianship” while the archival world has traditionally been the domain of white male librarianship, with very little happening “to interrupt that paradigm,” including very few Muslim archivists.

animation anime comedy Comics fantasy Fiction genres harem Japanese people Librarians Libraries Pop culture mediums public libraries romance romantic comedy school libraries slice-of-life special libraries speculative fiction webcomics

From action to romance: Examining student librarians in anime

The Japanese Library Association (JLA) reports that almost all of the schools in Japan have libraries, with tens of thousands in elementary and junior high schools, and less in high, middle, and special schools. Specifically, there are many more libraries in elementary schools than in other schools, due to the number of schools. Even so, there is a School Library Law first enacted in 1953, which states that schools “should have libraries,” and a 1997 amendment which led teacher librarians to be sent to schools with more than 12 classes. However, they aren’t excepted from regular duties as teachers of specific subjects in classrooms. [1] In addition there is a library law which was first enacted in 1950, with amendments from 1952 to 1965. This focus is reflected in anime, which I’ll focus on in this post, bringing together many other scattered posts on this blog which have included student librarians.

All these characters work in school libraries, otherwise known as school library media centers, which are libraries within schools where students, staff, and parents of the school have access to resources, with a mission to allow all members of the school’s community to have equitable access to resources,while using different types of media, the internet, and books. They are distinct from public libraries because they extend, support, and individualize the curriculum of the school, and as the coordinating and central agency for school materials. They have been praised for positively supporting student assessment. [2] These libraries are meant to serve small and large groups,having a learning space for students, functioning as a central location of information available. It also allows students to safely access internet, and has collaborative ventures with staff, providing opportunities for students. At the same time, the budget is important, while school libraries are staffed either by librarians, teacher librarians, or others who have a library science degree. [3]

When it comes to librarians in anime, they are student librarians. Speaking broadly, not specifically about Japan, but about these librarians in general, they provide valuable input for library development and “raise the profile of the library among their peers”. They also ensure day-to-day operations of libraries, although they only work during lunch and break times, but has to perform their duties or they will be replaced or fired. In such schools where this is available, many students have the opportunity to become a librarian. However, in some higher education institutions, students can be paid. In other cases, they might be student library aides. [4]

One of the first librarian characters I came across was Hisami Hishishii in R.O.D. the TV. Voiced by Taeko Kawata in Japanese, and by Megan Taylor Harvey in English dub, Hisami is a student librarian. Her character also is, in keeping with how librarians are usually portrayed, quiet, shy, and lover of books. At the same time, she is a friend with the protagonist, Anita King, who she has a crush on. She further has the distinction of being a 13-year-old author as well. Such characters appear as they are in line with preferences of anime viewers who are mostly in high school themselves, meaning that many anime are set in high school, although that doesn’t always limit the storytelling. [5]

Some examples of student librarians in anime
Some examples of student librarians in anime. From left to right: Yamada, Azusa Aoi, Fumi Manjōme, Fumio Murakumi, and Himeko Agari

This contrasts with Yamada in B Gata H Kei. Voiced by Yukari Tamura in Japanese, and Brittney Karbowski in English dub, she goes to a high school in Japan. Using data summarized by the JLA, elementary schools have four times more libraries than high schools, because there are many more elementary schools than junior high schools, middle schools, or special schools. Similarly, Azusa Aoi in Whispered Words, who is voiced by Mayuki Makiguchi, and Fumi Manjōme in Aoi Hana / Sweet Blue Flowers, who is voiced by Ai Takabe, are both student librarians in their respective anime. Additionally, there’s Fumio Murakumi in Girl Friend Beta, voiced by Kaori Nazuka, who goes to a high school, and Himeko Agari in Komi Can’t Communicate, voiced by Yukiyo Fujii. If I remember right, Hasegawa Sumika in Bernard-jou Iwaku a.k.a. Miss Bernard said, voiced by Aya Suzaki, is at an elementary school or some school lower than a high school.

Beyond this is Rin Shima in Laid Back-Camp, voiced by Nao Tōyama, Nagisa Yasaka in My Roommate is a Cat (“What Connects Us”), who is voiced by Hisako Tōjō, and Sumireko Sanshokunin a.k.a. “Pansy” in Oresuki, voiced by Haruka Tomatsu. There’s also an unnamed and uncredited librarian in Kin-iro Mosaic aka Kinmoza (“The Girl on My Mind”). In fact, the only male student librarian with a name I know of at present is Yuu Izumi in Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie (“Cultural Festival I”). He is voiced by Shūichirō Umeda and he works alongside Kamiya, who is voiced by Ayaka Fukuhara.

There are two or three unnamed librarians in a Revolutionary Girl Utena episode (“The Sunlit Garden – Prelude”). From my current listing of fictional librarians, I’m not aware of any student librarians in Western animation as of yet, apart from the library clerk in The Simpsons episode (“Bart’s Girlfriend”), who is voiced by Hank Azaria. That’s it. Most are much older. Sabine in Sabine; an asexual coming of age story, is a student librarian, but she is in a webcomic and it is unlikely that will become an animation. However, if it does become an animation, she will be the first asexual librarian that I’m aware of in an animated series.

Some student librarians go to special schools. For instance, Chiyo Tsukudate in Strawberry Panic!, voiced by Chiwa Saitō, goes to an elite all-girls school. She goes to St. Miator’s Girls’ Academy, which is affiliated with two other all-girls schools, specifically St. Spica’s Girls’ Institute and St. Lulim’s Girls’ School. Comparably, in Manaria Friends, Anne and Grea go to the Mysteria Academy of Magic. Anne, who is voiced by Yōko Hikasa, and Grea, voiced by Ayaka Fukuhara, both help out in the library during the episode “Hide-and-Seek”. They also serve as library patrons in various other episodes.

There are various characters who are not student librarians, like Lilith in Yamibou, who is voiced by Sanae Kobayashi, an unnamed librarian in a Little Witch Academia episode (“Night Fall”), or characters in Library War like Iku Kasahara and Asako Shibasaki. Furthermore, Sophie Twilight in Ms. Vampire who lives in my neighborhood is a personal librarian and does not go to school. This is just a small listing of those librarians who are not students and are not, as a result, student librarians. [6]

The same can be said for the librarian in the strange first-person series, Makura no Danshi, also known as Makuranodanshi. Although he is apparently a “librarian boy”, he is 28 years old. Named Shirusu Mochizuki and voiced by: Kōsuke Toriumi, he appears in the episode “Librarian Danishi”, talking to the audience while shelving books and waking up a sleeping patron. In a connection to my review of librarians who sleep at the information desk back in January, he declares that naps disturb the other patrons and to not sleep in the library.

He also remembers frequent patrons, sees what people are reading in the library and he says he enjoys selecting books for patrons to read. He later makes an exception for the audience saying to rest there until his shift is over and goes further and declares that the library can become a place of “emotional healing.” That connects, in some way to my next example, this time of a student librarian.

Izumi and Kamiya working in the library together
Izumi and Kamiya working in the library together

One of the more intriguing student librarians I have come across during my anime watching is a blue-haired girl Kamiya, also known as Kamiya-san, in Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie. She is friends with the purple-haired protagonist, Izumi. She is on the library committee and he helps her put away some books, which all have Japanese call numbers. Although she is described as having a “cool but kind exterior,” with male and female fans, along with the ace of the volleyball team, this, and Izumi’s description of her as calm, composed, and pretty, is somewhat thrown into question.

She may be socially awkward as despite her popularity she wants to get away from it all and find a place that is quiet, the library. That is, in fact, how they first met, a year and half before, when she showed him how to enter books and items into the library catalog. At the present, she first tells Izumi he is different because he has a girlfriend, Shikimori, then grills him about it. She becomes impressed with his story and is a bit of a romantic rival to her in more ways than one.

It is later revealed to be a coincidence that both are paired for couples photos for the cultural festival and are on library duty together. In many ways, Kamiya is fulfilling the IFLA/UNESCO School Library Manifesto of 1999 which states that school libraries equip “students with life-long learning skills and develops the imagination, enabling them to live as responsible citizens”, as the skills he learns while working at the library will likely help him in the future.

Then, in the episode “Cultural Festival II”, Izumi and Kamiya are again in the library for library duty while the cultural festival is going on. They both talk about a recent movie they both watched. She has a vision or dream before that, at the beginning of the episode that she is losing Izumi to Shikimori, which makes her sad. While Izumi says he wasn’t expecting a conversation about lost love and expectations with Kamiya, he is glad they are talking about it. Kamiya even has the grace to trade e number with Shikimori so she can be with Izumi during the festival, something she didn’t have to do, but it says a lot about her as a character. As such, she is a librarian character, and so much more, who has a strong supporting role in this anime.

This is in stark contrast to other librarians in anime. Take for example the unnamed student librarians in an episode of Azumanga Daioh (“One Spring Night”). Seen helping patrons at the beginning of the episode while at the information desk, these two librarian aides, one of whom is a woman and the other a man, tell the protagonists, who are studying there, that they are leaving for the day. They ask them to turn off the lights when they leave. While this would be unthinkable for some librarians to ask patrons to close up for them, it is in-keeping with the slice-of-life vibe of the series, which sometimes is a bit chill and at other times wades into surreal comedy. In any event, the protagonists end up turning off the light and leaving before it gets too dark, as they have no reason to stay there and have to get back home.

Joro sitting next to Pansy
Joro sitting next to Pansy at a table in the school library

Diametrically opposed to the previous examples is Sumireko Sanshokunin a.k.a. “Pansy” in Oresuki. Voiced by Haruka Tomatsu, she wears glasses, braids, and has a “sharp tongue,” to say the least. In the first episode, she is described as a quiet and plain library aide by the show’s protagonist, Amatsuyu “Joro” Kisaragi, at first. This is thrown into question when it turns out she has been stalking and watching him, while she holds the Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, a novel by Robert Louis Stevenson.

The novel is said to be a book defining in the gothic horror genre, while the phrase “Jekyll and Hyde”refers to those who appear outwardly good but are actually shockingly evil. In this episode, she has some of that nature in that she ships a bench Joro had been sitting on to the library and pressures (and manipulates) him to coming to the library every day during lunch after confessing her love to him. He agrees on the proviso that the library is a “secluded” space.

Her actions on the face, violate the Code of Ethics for Librarians outlined by the JLA. In fact, Joro calls her a “demonic stalker” in the next episode. However, she remains aware of everything going on, an helps him out, and is later called, in the episode “I Met You Before” as a “formidable woman”. As rumors swirl across the school about Joro, she uses her role as a student librarian to encourage Oga, a star athlete at the school, to reveal he set up Joro, by convincing two other students, Himawari and Cosmos, that he lied to them. It is then that she reveals to Joro that she is the girl he fell in love with at a baseball game and is only taking on the appearance of a quiet, reserved librarian to hide her true nature from everyone else, especially from a supposed “demon” who is after her.

As the show goes on, the library becomes a place that Joro, and his newfound friends, Cosmos, Himawari, and Oga, study, while Pansy gains new friends of her own. It even becomes a place to whether the crises he weathers, like a libelous article claiming he has three girlfriends written by a jealous reporter, Asunaro. In the meantime, she becomes more comfortable with herself, and a new student even meets everyone in the library.

The “demon” of Pansy is revealed when there is a concerted effort to save the library, in the latter part of the show’s second season, a boy from her previous school, Hose. The school administration declares that there needs to more traffic from people using the library, i.e. more patrons, to prevent it from being closed. This is successful, and the library becomes a social hub for students, but its role as a secluded place is lost. Even so, more students means she can more effectively serve library patrons and beats an attempt to impede library activities, standing against the JLA’s statement on intellectual freedom in libraries which was last revised in 1979.

It turns out that Hose once had a crush on her in middle school, and he will stop at nothing to make her his, with two girls almost serving as his lackeys. This means she changed her appearance in order to avoid a possessive man who still loved her. Ultimately, Hose loses a bet with Joro, and Pansy says they can keep meeting in the school library, saying she still loves Joro, despite the fact she calls him “industrial waste” after he asked Pansy, Cosmos, and Himawari to be his girlfriends. The latter is seemingly a plea to get Pansy to have more friends, showing he cares about others beyond himself, at least in this case, even though he is generally a despicable character.

Library in Seitokai Yakuindomo
As of the writing of this post, I have not yet watched Seitokai Yakuindomo, the screenshot of which is shown above, but according to the fandom page, in this series the library is a “popular place during exam season” and many characters hang out there.

What Pansy experienced is not at all surprising considering there are reports of people sexually molesting girls in Japanese libraries, which are known as toshoshitsu in Japanese, ongoing sex-child prostitution involving high school girls, and sexual assault of schoolgirls on public transit. On a non-terrifying and disturbing note, there’s also a dedication to the privacy of library users, in line with the JLA’s statement I mentioned earlier, saying that it isn’t right if “people cannot use a library free from anxiety.”

Topics in libraries in Japan are organized by subject and letter, along with reference and foreign language books. What’s in the library would differ depending on whether the library is in a preschool, elementary, junior high, or high school. Furthermore the fact that attendance is almost universal with no absences, the education is intense, rules for uniforms are strict, students clean the bathrooms, classrooms, and cafeterias of their schools, and balanced meals provided in schools undoubtedly influence library environments in schools. [7]

There are other libraries in Japan too, beyond those in schools. This includes the National Diet Library, which made an appearance in R.O.D. the TV, the National Film Center Library, Automobile Library, Asia Library, Japan Aeronautic Association Aviation Library, an anime library, a manga library, and the related Diplomatic Archives and National Archives of Japan, to name a few. There’s also, apart from the ALA, the Japan Association of National University Libraries, Japan Special Libraries Association, and Japan Society of Library and Information Science. There’s even overnight libraries which are styled after remolded traditional homes which can be used by students as a place to study after school or relax. At one time they were even lending libraries at hospitals, library festivals in some places in Japan, and books just devoted to autobiographies. [8]

More broadly, there are libraries in “nearly every town and neighborhood in Japan,” meaning that is common to see people during their commutes or outside reading books and other materials. These libraries are “cultural facilities for the dissemination of knowledge” in Japan, sometimes having unique designs, water fountains, and library committees (at least in schools) where students are assigned library duties. Due to this role, it is no surprise that many libraries in the country prohibit photography. [9]

All of these libraries in Japan is not much of a surprise. After all, in Japan, having “harmonious relations with others” with reciprocity and fulling social obligations is more important than a relationship someone has to a so-called “higher power”. As such, order, harmony, and self-development underlie much of Japanese social interaction, which is why substitutes are rarely used, lunches are eaten in classrooms, and summer break is only 5 weeks long. Some schools even have classes on Saturday and there are various student clubs. Most also walk or bike to school if the distance isn’t that long. [10]

The fact that many Japanese librarians in anime are schoolgirls is in line with the audience of such animated series and likely current dynamics in school itself. Japan is a patriarchal society where men are portrayed  to be the leaders and not in “feminized” professions like librarianship, with more men in the workforce, for all professions, than women. This is happening while Japan’s society is greying with an estimated 40% of the population to be elderly by 2060. [11] In the end, there will continue to be Japanese librarians in school environments going forward, a trend which isn’t going to end anytime soon.

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] Teachers who are part of the JLA are part of its School Library Division. There are also divisions for public libraries, university libraries, junior college libraries, special libraries, and education. There are also committees and working groups which focus on, according to the JLA, “library policies, library management, copyright, intellectual freedom, bibliography, preservation and conservation, services for the handicapped, publications, library services for children and young adults, international relations, etc.” A June 2020 article in Nippon also stated that the number of libraries in Japan is increasing.

[2] “Standards for the 21st Century Learner,” American Association of School Librarians (AASL), 2007; “Frequently Asked Questions.” American Library Association, May 12, 2008; “School Library Campaign.” American Library Association,” November 23, 2008;  Morris, Betty J. Administering the school library media center (Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited), 2013, p.32; “Student Learning through Ohio School Libraries : The Ohio Research Study.” Ohio Educational Library Media Association, Feb. 21, 2004; Lonsdale, Michele. Impact of School Libaries in Student Achievement.” Australian School Library Association, 2003. Also see AASL position statements.

[3] Morris 2004; De las Casas, Dianne. (2010). “Tag! you’re it!”: playing on the digital playground. Knowledge Quest, 39(1), 80-82; “School Library Handbook.” The Wyoming State Library, Jun. 6, 2021; Thomas, Margie J. and Patsy H. Perritt. “A Higher Standard: Many states have recently revised their certification requirements for school librarians.” School Library Journal, Dec. 1, 2003; “School Libraries & Education.” American Library Association, accessed June 4, 2022; “Strong School Libraries Build Strong Students.” AASL, 2013. Also see some sources listed on the School library Wikipedia page.

[4] “Student librarians.” National Library of New Zealand. Accessed June 5, 2022; “School student librarians.” St. Augustine’s CE High School. Accessed June 5, 2022; “2019-2020 Student Librarians.” Ilako Library. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Student Librarians.” Co-Op Academy Walkden. Accessed June 5, 2022; Slater, Lewis. “The Student Librarians.” Unity College, Jun. 1, 2019; “Student Librarians.” Tarlton Law Library. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Student Librarians Update Library.” Cambian University, Apr. 3, 2022; “Librarians for First-Year Students.” Harvard Library. Accessed June 5, 2022; Pollock, Natasha. “Student Librarians: Contributors in Our Learning Community.” Books Are Just the Beginning, Feb. 14, 2017; “Student Librarians.” Kettering Science Academy. Accessed June 5, 2022; Onwubiko, Emmanuel Chidiadi. “An Assessment of the Effect of Self-efficacy, Reading Culture, Utilization of Library Habits on the Academic Achievements of Student-librarians.” Library Philosophy and Practice, May 2022; “History.” Board Of Student Librarians. Methodist’ Boys School Kuala Lumpur, Aug. 23, 2010; Heraper, Sue. “Managing a Successful Student Library Aide Program.” Student Library Aide. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Student Library Aide.” Mississippi Department of Education. Accessed June 5, 2022.

[5] Kemner, Louis. “25 Best High School Anime, Ranked.” CBR, May 15, 2022.

[6] Others include Aruto, Iina, Kokoro in Kokoro Toshokan a.k.a. Kokoro Library, Hamyuts Meseta, Mirepoc Finedel, Noloty Malche, Ireia Kitty, Mattalast Ballory, Volken Macmani, Ruruta Coozancoona, Mokkania Fluru, Fhotona Badgammon, and Makia Dekishart in Tatakau Shisho: The Book of Bantorra, Isomura in Let’s Make a Mug Too episode (“The Garden of Sky and Wind”), unnamed librarian in Akebi’s Sailor Uniform episode (“There’s No School Tomorrow, Right?”), unnamed/uncredited librarian in Gabriel DropOut (“Fun Forever After…”), four unnamed/uncredited librarians in Cardcaptor Sakura episode (“Sakura and the Summer Holiday Homework”), and two librarians in Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai (“My Senpai is a Bunny Girl”), Atsushi Dojo, Mikihisa Komaki, Hikaru Tezuka, Ryusuke Genda, and Kazuichi Inamine in Library War, and Riichi Miura in The Ancient Magus Bride: Those Awaiting a Star.

[7] “Man arrested for sexually molesting junior high school girl in library.”  JapanToday, Oct. 19, 2021; “Japanese Vocabulary – School Rooms.” PuniPuni, accessed June 4, 2022; “Statement on Intellectual Freedom in Libraries.” Japan Library Association, 1979; “Japanese School System.” Education in Japan, accessed June 4, 2022; “Explore Japan: Schools.” KidsWebJapan. JapanLinks, accessed June 4, 2022; Dom Alex, “Japanese High School Library Tour,” YouTube, Feb. 6, 2016; xxDotheMonkeyDancexx. “RYE Japan #30 – school library.” YouTube, May 16, 2013; Schaub, Michael. “Haruki Murakami’s library list is published, and Japanese librarians are up in arms.” LA Times, Dec. 5, 2015; Fifield, Anna. “For vulnerable high school girls in Japan, a culture of “dates” with older men.” The Denver Post, May 16, 2017, reprinted from The Washington Post; Ripley, Will. “Fascination with Japanese schoolgirl culture hiding a darker side?CNN, Dec. 27, 2015; Ekin, Annette. “Sexual assault in Japan: ‘Every girl was a victim’.” Al-Jazeera, Mar. 8, 2017. Also see the Wikipedia page “Education in Japan” for more information.

[8] “Libraries & Archives: National & Administrative Libraries.” JapanLinks. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Libraries & Archives: Library Associations.” JapanLinks. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Libraries & Archives: Libraries in Specific Fields.” JapanLinks. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “What’s Cool: Sleeping Surrounded by Books – Bookstores and Libraries that Double as Accommodation.” KidsWebJapan. JapanLinks. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Reading for All: “Barrier-Free” Picture Books for Children.” Trends in Japan, Dec. 9, 2002; “Library Festival.” KidsWebJapan. JapanLinks. Accessed June 5, 2022; “This is My Life: Young and Old Producing Autobiographies.” Trends in Japan, Sept. 22, 2000; “What’s Cool: Suginami Animation Museum.” KidsWebJapan. JapanLinks. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, Apr. 2005; “Exploring the History of Manga.” Trends in Japan, Jan. 22, 2007. The National Diet Library is said to have more books (and presumably materials) than any other library in Japan.

[9] “Japan in Photos – Japan Celebrates Reading Week.” Japan Up Close. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, Dec. 1, 2021; “Seaside Momochi: Waterfront Development for a Multimedia Society.” JapanAtlas. WebJapan. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Japan’s Blue Created With Indigo Dye.” Trends in Japan, Jan. 2014; “In the Morning.” KidsWebJapan. WebJapan. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Special Feature on Schools in Japan: Classroom Duties.” WebJapan. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Jan. 2021; “Feeling Like a Protagonist on Location.” Trends in Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Japan, Land of Water.” niponica, no. 15, 2015.

[10] “Values and Beliefs” within Japan: A Country Study (Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress, 1994, ed Ronald E. Dolan and Robert L. Worden), reprinted on; “Explore Japan: Schools.” KidsWebJapan. WebJapan. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; Freeman, Ellen. “9 Ways Japanese Schools Are Different From American Schools.” Mental Floss, Dec. 18, 2015; “Japanese Educational System.” Japan Educational Travel.” Accessed June 5, 2022;  Johnson, Marcia L. and Jeffrey R. Johnson, “Daily Life in Japanese High Schools.” ERIC Digest, Oct. 1996. School cleaning by students is intended to make students responsible for their surroundings, although there are cleaning staff as well. Also see Nishioka, Kanae. “Historical overview of curriculum organization” in Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment in Japan: Beyond Lesson Study (ed. Koji Tanaka, Kanae Nishioka and Terumasa Ishii, New York: Routledge, 2017), pp. 11-27; Tokyo Five. “13 Ways Japanese Schools Are Different From American Ones.” Business Insider, Jul 17, 2014; “Top Performing Countries: Japan.” NCEE. Accessed June 5, 2022; Ooman, Emily Joy. “10 Facts About Education in Japan.” The Borgen Project, May 20, 2020; Mandrapa, Nebojsa. “Interesting Facts about Japanese School System.” Novak Djokovic Foundation, Mar. 11, 2015; Abe, Namiko. “The Japanese Education System.” ThoughtCo, Sept. 8, 2018; “Japanese high-school students.” Contents Library. Japan Foundation. Accessed June 5, 2022.

[11] “Labor force in Japan from 1973 to 2021 by gender.” Statista, Feb, 2022; “Labor force, female (% of total labor force) – Japan.” WorldBank, Feb. 8, 2022; “Labour force participation rate by sex and age (%) – Annual.” ILOSTAT Explorer, 2021; “Country Profiles.” ILOSTAT. International Labour Organization, select “Japan” from drop-down menu; “Labor force, total – Japan.” WorldBank, Feb. 8, 2022; “Japanese Workforce Statistics 2022: Digging Into the Labor Market of Japan.” TeamStage. Accessed June 5, 2022; “Demographic Change in Japan.” Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare of Japan. Accessed June 5, 2022; “How Japan can take the lead with an ageing workforce.” World Economic Forum, May 8, 2019. Recent statistics from the Statistics Bureau of Japan (see table 1 on this page) show more women working in the education field than men. Furthermore, e-Stat shows 144,000 men and 201,000 women working in education learning support in Japan in 2021, 136,000 women and 99,000 men working in school education in 2021. The same chart shows that 22,000 men and 12,000 women work in video picture, sound information, character information production, and distribution in 2021, which I’m assuming is referring to anime production. There does not appear to be a category for libraries, unlike the BLS in the U.S. Also see the badly sourced and poorly maintained “Labor market of Japan” page on Wikipedia for further information.

anime Fiction genres idol Japanese people Librarians Libraries Pop culture mediums school libraries

Behind the Screen: Additional Japanese voice actors who bring fictional librarians to life!

five japanese vas
From left to right: Yukari Tamura, Mayuki Makiguchi, Ai Takabe, Chiwa Saitō, and Yōko Hikasa

Part of understanding fictional librarians is understanding those behind the screen,specifically for voices of animated characters. Part 1 of this series focused on Black voice actors, Part 2 on Asian and Latin American voice actors, Part 3 on Indian voice actors, Part 4 on Japanese voice actors, Part 5 on Japanese-speaking and English-speaking voice actors, Part 6 on White female voice actors, and Part 7 on White male voice actors.

This post brings together those characters which I forgot to add to previous parts of this Behind the Screen series and other characters I have found since putting together parts 1-7.

About the voice actors

Many of the voice actors who voice fictional librarians in anime are Japanese women. This includes Yukari Tamura who voices Yamada in B Gata H Kei, and Mayuki Makiguchi who voices Azusa Aoi in Whispered Words. Tamura is known most recently for her roles in Kaginado (Mai Kawasumi and Mei Haruhara) and Birdie Wing: Golf Girls’ Story (Mizuho Himekawa), according to her official website. Tamura previously voiced characters in Naruto, Super HxEros, Cutie Honey Universe, Crossing Time, Akame ga Kill!, Girl Friend Beta, Kin-iro Mosaic, Ben-To, Kampfer, Kashimashi: Girl Meets Girl, and R.O.D. the TV

Makiguchi is just as talented. She as voiced established characters in Bamboo Blade, Gintama, Soul Eater, Kimi ni Todoke, The World God Only Knows, Go! Princess PreCure, Puzzle & Dragons, and Master Journeys. She also provided dubbing with additional voices in Adventure Time.

The saddest story is the case of Ai Takabe who voices Fumi Manjōme in Aoi Hana / Sweet Blue Flowers, her voice acting debut role. Best known for playing Fumiyo Nabekura in Guren Onna and voicing Agiri Goshiki in Kill Me Baby. In 2015, she was arrested for cocaine use, and although the charges were dropped the following year, and she wasn’t prosecuted by the authorities, with the prosecutor admitting it was a miniscule amount of cocaine, it served as the end of her voice acting career. Some argued it was a “stark example” of the Japanese entertainment industry’s penchant for “distancing its projects from any sort of criminal activity.” In 2017, however, she married a man said to be an “elite representative of a major law firm.” She is also known for her roles voicing characters in Wandering Son and Sacred Seven.

Then there’s Chiwa Saitō who voices Chiyo Tsukudate in Strawberry Panic! and Yōko Hikasa who voices Anne in Manaria Friends. Saitō is best-known for her roles in voicing characters in Monogatari, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Akatsuki no Yona, Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya, Aria, and Genshin Impact. In the case of this blog, its interesting that she voiced Anita King in R.O.D. the TV, since that series has library themes weaved throughout! She further voiced characters in Maria Watches Over Us (Mami Yamaguchi), Gintama, Whispered Words (Miyako Taema), and  YuruYuri (Nadeshiko Ōmuro).

Hikasa, on the other hand, is known, for her roles voicing characters in K-On! (Mio Akiyama), Little Witch Academia (Diana Cavendish), and Shaman King (Yoh Asakura). She also voiced characters in series such as Gokujyo, Girl Friend Beta (Risa Shinomiya), Flip Flappers (Sayuri), Macross Delta (Claire Paddle), and A Couple of Cuckoos (Namie Umino).

Then there’s Ayaka Fukuhara and Aya Suzaki. Fukahara voices Grea in Manaria Friends and Suzaki voices Hasegawa Sumika in Bernard-jou Iwaku a.k.a. Miss Bernard said. Fukahara voices another fictional librarian, Kamiya / Kamiya-san, in Skikimori’s Not Just A Cutie. She is known for her role voicing characters in The Idolmaster Cinderella Girls, Arpeggio of Blue Steel and Qualidea Code. On another library-related note, she voices the Chairman in A Good Librarian Like a Good Shepherd, an anime which happens to not have that many library scenes weirdly enough.

Suzaki, on the other hand, most recently voiced Rio Isuzu in Cue!, Nora Valkyrie in RWBY: Ice Queendom, and Ichi Tanaka  in Assault Lily; Bouquet. She also voiced characters in A Certain Scientific Railgun (Rikou Takitsubo), Kandagawa Jet Girls (Manpuku Kuromaru), Release the Spyce (Mei Yachiyo), and Knights of Sidonia (Ena Hoshijiro).

There are three other voice actors I’d like to mention: Nao Tōyama, Aoi Yuki, and Shūichirō Umeda. Tōyama voices Rin Shima in Laid Back-Camp, Yuki voices Dantalian in As Miss Beelzebub Likes, and Umeda voices as Yuu Izumi / Izumi-kun in Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie.

Tōyama is known for her roles in voicing characters in The World God Only Knows (Kanon Nakagawa), Niskoi (Chitoge Kirisaki), My Youth Romantic Comedy Is Wrong, As I Expected (Yui Yuigahama), Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai (Tomoe Koga), and Kin-iro Mosaic (Karen Kujō). Yuki, on the other hand, also voiced a character in My Youth Romantic Comedy Is Wrong, As I Expected (Komachi Hikigaya) but also voiced characters in anime such as Puella Magi Madoka Magica (Madoka Kaname) and Rent-A-Girlfriend (Mami Nanami).

Finally, there’s Umeda. The only male voice actor in this post, he has voiced characters in anime such as Banana Fish, The Aquatope on the White Sand, and Zombie Land Saga.

About the characters

11 Japanese fictional librarians
Top row, from left to right: Yamada, Azusa Aoi, Fumi Manjōme, Chiyo Tsukudate, Anne and Grea. Bottom row, from left to right: Hasegawa Sumika, Rin Shima, Dantalion, Kamiya, and Yuu Izumi.

This brings me to the characters themselves. Yamada in B Gata H Kei is the protagonist of this anime. She a 15-year-old high school student  who declares she will have sexual relations with 100 guys, but her insecurities result in rejections of anyone who makes a move toward her. So, Takashi Kosuda, her classmate, becomes the target of her seductive efforts. This includes working at the school library.

Azusa Aoi in Whispered Words and Fumi Manjōme in Aoi Hana / Sweet Blue Flowers are more directly librarians than Yamada, although both are also students like her. Azuza is a classmate of the protagonists, a lover of yuri, and likes to attended yuri-only events and write yuri dōjinshi. However, she disapproves of Tomoe and Miyako’s relationship as she believes that love between women should be fragile and pure, hidden away from people’s eyes. In contrast, Fumi is the protagonist of Sweet Blue Flowers. She is a shy and tall girl who has a crush on Yasuko and is good friends with the other protagonist, Akira Okudaira.

There are additional characters who are students and librarians at their respective schools. This includes Chiyo Tsukudate in Strawberry Panic!, Anne and Grea in Manaria Friends, and Hasegawa Sumika in Bernard-jou Iwaku a.k.a. Miss Bernard said. All of these characters are different from each other, however. Chiyo is a timid first-year who deeply admires Nagisa, Anne is a princess and magical prodigy, and Grea is half-human/half-dragon, who grows confident thanks to Anne. It is heavily implied that Grea has feelings for Anne and vice versa. Hasegawa is a protagonist, a librarian, and student as well.

This contrasts with Rin Shima in Laid-Back Camp. She is a student volunteer at her school library and loves to camp. She meets Nadeshiko while camping and they become friends. She is never shown doing much in the school library apart from reading a book, usually books about camping, or checking her phone. Similar in some ways to her is Dantalion in As Miss Beelzebub Likes who often sleeps in the library as he stays up late reading books upon books.

Contrasting this is Kamiya / Kamiya-san and Yuu Izumi / Izumi-kun in Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie. Both work on the library committee together at their high school. In Kamiya’s real debut episode, “Cultural Festival I” [1] it is said that both of them had worked together before. In the episode, Kamiya says that Yuu has changed, saying it is because of his girlfriend, the show’s other protagonist, Shikimori. She is interested in his relationship with Shikimori, which he describes as uncharacteristic, remembering back to when he showed her how to use the library systems, like catalog books. The episode also shows them shelving books and Japanese call numbers on the sides of books. Anime News Network said that Kamiya “presents a cool but kind exterior, and has fans from boys and girls alike” and that she is “also the ace of the volleyball team.”

That’s all for this week. Until next week!

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] Her fandom page says that she first appeared in episode 2, but she must have not made a lasting impression, because I don’t even remember her character. It isn’t until episode 7 that we get more of her backstory. She also has a crush on Izumi.

adventure animation anime dimly lit libraries fantasy Fiction genres iyashikei Japanese people Librarians Libraries magic libraries Pop culture mediums school libraries slice-of-life speculative fiction supernatural Thai people White people

“Against the hair of your professions”: Fictional librarians and hair buns

Often librarians are portrayed as quiet, bookish people, who shush those who are noisy, and act in a stereotypical manner. However, librarians come in many types and kinds, either with an MLIS/MLS or not, and those stereotypes can be disrupted when a librarian changes professions as it changes audience expectations. Even so, librarians aren’t united on what the image of librarians should be changed into in order to counter the stereotypes. Through all of this, many librarians are portrayed with hair buns, part of the oft-stereotype. [2] Today, I’ll explore that, determining why this is the case, its significance in librarian portrayals, and what it means overall. As Swallow said in Act I of William Shakespeare’s classic comedy play, The Mary Wives of Windsor, “if you should fight, you go against the hair of your professions,” meaning that you are going against the grain.

Fictional librarians are often shown with so-called “traditional” outfits, looks, and hairstyles, including hair buns, which are symbolic in research around stereotypes themselves. This has even cropped up in webcomics. This is in part because styling one’s hair can be “highly politicized” and complicated, especially for people of color, who experience microaggressions when people want to “touch” their hair or question it entirely. Some have even argued that different hair styles can be empowering and resist stereotypes, even as a library can be a “very conservative” place to work, although this may not be as strict in university library environments. Hair can also be an opportunity to communicate change, while serving as an intricate part of the identity and responsibility of the profession itself, with different hair styles having the potential to dispel stereotypes. [3]

In Western animation, this is clear as librarians of color, like Clara Rhone in Welcome to the Wayne, and Mira in Mira, Royal Detective episode (“The Case of the Missing Library Book”) don’t wear hair buns. Neither does Ms. Herrera in a Archie’s Weird Mysteries episode (“The Haunting of Riverdale”). However, the unnamed librarian in a We Bare Bears episode (“The Library”) prominently wears a hair bun, and serves as the only librarian of color that I know of, in Western animation, that does so. This could be a function of her role in the library and set rules which may establish that she dresses to “impress” in a semi-formal outfit. So, it could be a consequence of that, as other librarians I’ve mentioned may work in environments which are more open with their rules around self-expression or care little about how people look.

When it comes to White female librarians in animation, it is a different story. Apart from Kaisa in Hilda, the unnamed librarian in a Steven Universe episode (“Buddy’s Book”), the librarian in the first Zevo-3 episode, Mrs. Higgins in a Sofia the First episode (“The Princess Test”), and Amity Blight in The Owl House, who briefly wears her hair in a pony trail, which became a sensation among fans of the series, to give a few examples, many of the other librarians wear hair buns. [4] This includes the librarian characters, who are effectively one-episode-wonders or only appear very briefly, in episodes of Futurama, DC Super Hero Girls, Rugrats, Kim Possible, Timon & Pumbaa, Dexter’s Laboratory, Totally Spies, Phineas & Ferb, and The Simpsons, to name a few shows.

Also, Francis Clara Censorsdoll in Moral Orel wears a hair bun. Even, the blue-glasses wearing librarian in The Flintstones episode “The Hit Songwriter” wears a hair bun. At times, it appears that librarians with hair buns are meant to symbolize social conservative and prudish people, like the librarian in an episode of Beavis and Butt-Head (“Cyber-Butt”), who faints when she sees a nude image on a computer screen. Although she doesn’t wear a hair bun, what she symbolizes is similar to how some librarians are portrayed in Western animation.

Others have declared that the perception of librarians with hair buns or lace collars should be discarded, as librarians are highly active and high tech now. While someone can easily agree with this, it is harder to push away the image of a spinster librarian with a hair bun, with some wearing buns and braids while working in the library. There is the further point that many librarians may not have enough hair to put into a bun in the first place. At one point, librarians adopted the hair bun style at one time, giving life to what became the stereotype and cliche. However, nowadays many younger librarians have different hair styles, and some might even have better eyesight than anyone else as they don’t need glasses! [5] Still, tropes like the”Prim and Proper Bun” remain, with those with this hairstyle said to be in charge or be respected. This is somewhat countered with the “Loony Librarian” trope, which is said to describe a librarian who’s let “their profession mess with their mind a little.”

11 fictional librarians without hairbuns
Top row, from left to right: Violet Stanhope in Archie’s Weird Mysteries, Miss Dickens in Carl Squared, Sara in Too Loud, Sarah in Too Loud, and Mrs. Shusher in The Replacements. Bottom row, from left to right, Marion the librarian in Hanny Manny, Millie in Madagascar: A Little Wild, unnamed librarian in Kick Buttowski: Suburban Daredevil, unnamed librarian in Martin Mystery, unnamed librarian in Martin Mystery, and unnamed librarian in Uncle Grandpa.

The stern librarian with hair tied tightly behind their head, peering at patrons from behind their glasses, still remains a go-to-stereotype for too many, even perpetrated by journalists who should know better. Some even try and make it sexy, serious, while others highlight other hairstyles or fashions instead. [6] The shushing librarian remains, despite the fact it doesn’t reflect reality, with uptight librarians fading from existence except in pop culture, where they remain a negative stereotype. They appear as early as a 1921 silent film, with hair buns becoming an “occupational indicator” of librarians over time, even as there is no single image of a librarian. [7] Instead, actual librarians are different, and have varying styles. Jennifer Snoek-Brown, who runs Reel Librarians, has recognized this with posts about librarian style, like a librarian-themed clothing collection she posted about in May 2022.

Of course, there are actual librarians out there, like the elderly White woman with grey hair in a bun shown at the beginning of Ghostbusters, and others who embody the stereotype or wear librarian costumes for Halloween. However, there are just as many who run afoul of that stereotype, either by not shushing any patrons. The stereotype itself has its roots in gender with the profession dominated by White woman, although it is not accurate in the slightest. [8] There is supposed “greying” of the profession which only reinforces the images of frumpy stereotypical librarians, an image with unknown origins. The latter image is something which has become a signifier of the profession, for better or worse, despite efforts to counter it. The fight to counter such images continues, with some showing they are more than a librarian, like those who also bellydance, and others who thrive on change and want to dispel of the bun entirely. [9]

There are various librarians in Western animations who don’t wear hair buns. Apart from Amity, who I mentioned earlier, there’s Violet Stanhope in an episode of Archie’s Weird Mysteries (“The Haunting of Riverdale”), Miss Dickens in Carl Squared episode (“Carl’s Techno-Jinx”), Sara and Sarah in Too Loud, Mrs. Shusher in The Replacements episode (“Quiet Riot”), Millie in Madagascar: A Little Wild episode (“Melman at the Movies”), and Marion the Librarian in Hanny Manny. There are additional unnamed librarians in Martin Mystery, Kick Buttowski: Suburban Daredevil, Uncle Grandpa, Phineas and Ferb, and Amphibia, none of whom wear hair buns either.

But there is something more to the bun hairstyle. In some ways, it can be practical, despite being a stereotype for librarians, and is claimed to add “glam” or “chic” to any outfit, with no “right or wrong way to wear a bun” as one site declared. This can also be pushed away by people of color who want to move away from being called a “bun lady”. At the same time, apart from the types of buns, some of which are said to show that a person is “sophisticated.”

Ancient Chinese, Koreans, Polynesians, and Greeks, often women, all wore hair buns. The hair style was popular in Korea and Japan among men, for one reason or another. It became popular beginning in the 1800s, as styles from ancient Greeks and Romans entering into high society, and again in the 1870s, during the Victorian period. [10]

Nagisa Yasaka overjoyed

This isn’t the case for all librarians, however. The above librarian, Nagisa Yasaka (voiced by Hisako Tōjō), appears in one episode of My Roommate is a Cat, “Ones Who Can’t Be Controlled”, and is overjoyed when the protagonist gives her a book, thinking she’d be interested in it, after struggling to decide what to give her, not knowing her interests. She tells him that she is a school librarian. Unfortunately, we only see her in this one episode and never again, so it isn’t known whether she wears a hair bun while working in the library or not.

She is not alone in this. Hair buns are somewhat rare for the librarians I’ve seen in anime to-date, with even Fumio Murakumi in Girl Friend Beta having her hair braided into tails, but not tied up in a hair bun. The same is the case for Hasegawa Sumika in Bernard-jou Iwaku a.k.a. Miss Bernard said, while Himeko Agari in Komi Can’t Communicate has hair too short to put into a hair bun. Even the two librarians briefly shown in the first episode of Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai don’t have a hair bun, as one as her hair in a ponytail and the other doesn’t have her hair tied up. The unnamed and uncredited librarian shown in an episode of Kin-iro Mosaic aka Kinmoza (“The Girl on My Mind”) doesn’t have her hair in a hair bun either. Instead, its just in a pony tail.

However, there are a couple librarians in anime who have a hair buns. Take for example, the unnamed librarian in an episode of Akebi’s Sailor Uniform episode (“There’s No School Tomorrow, Right?”). More prominently, there’s Rin Shima in Laid-Back Camp. Apart from her sleeping at the information desk, from time to time, as I described in a post back in January, she seems comfortable with a hair bun. It allows her to keep her hair tied up while she works, and doesn’t serve as a distraction. She might be the most prominent Japanese fictional librarian who wears a hair bun.

This difference in fictional librarians is one of the many aspects which sets apart librarians in anime from those in Western animation. If the photographs on Wikimedia and scattered images online are any indication, Japanese female librarians often don’t often wear hair buns. So, in this sense, the anime may be reflecting reality. The same may be the case for Western animation, to an extent, except that there has been a strong resistance to the “bun lady” perception in Western countries, especially by librarians of color, who don’t want to tie up their hair in buns. Hopefully, Western animation, in coming years, features more librarians without hair buns, and guts the stereotype entirely, even if it is too easy to rely on old cliches of librarians (often White) who are strict, curmudgeonly, and have hair buns.

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] Top row, from left to right: unnamed librarian in Futurama, unnamed librarian in DC Super Hero Girls, Ms. Hatchet in Kim Possible, Rita Book in Timon & Pumbaa, unnamed librarian in Rugrats. Bottom row, from left to right: Mrs. L in Dexter’s Laboratory, unnamed librarian in Totally Spies!, unnamed librarian in We Bare Bears, Eztli in Victor and Valentino, Francis Clara Censordoll in Moral Orel, unnamed librarian in Big City Greens, Arlene in Phineas and Ferb, and Censordoll again.

[2] Matthew Wood. “10 Most Awesome Librarians in Pop Culture,” Comic Book Resources, Aug. 22, 2019; Stephen Walker, V. Lonnie Lawson. “The Librarian Stereotype and the Movies,” MC Journal: The Journal of Academic Media Librarianship1, no. 1 (1993): 16-28; Dana Vinke. “Unconventional Librarians,” Image of Libraries in Popular Culture, Fall 2001, accessed May 27, 2022; Sadie Trombetta. “11 Of The Coolest Librarians From Pop Culture,” Bustle, Mar. 2, 2015. For additional resources, see Ashanti White’s Not Your Ordinary Librarian: Debunking the Popular Perceptions of Librarians, Nicole Pagowsky’s The Librarian Stereotype: Deconstructing Perceptions and Presentations of Information Work, to mention two books. There are librarians like Lani in Diner Dash and Myrna Bookbottom in Freaky Flyers who both embody librarian stereotypes, but there are others that buck these stereotypes.

[3] Raymond Pun and Jesus Lau, “Hair and Hairstyles as Metaphors for Librarians,” IFLA WLIC 2018, pp. 1-5.

[4] Amity is beloved by fans since she is a somewhat prominent recurring character and she is a lesbian who is in a romantic relationship with the show’s protagonist, Luz Noceda.

[5] Christine Sharbrough, “What Does a Librarian Do All Day?,” BellaOnline, 2013; DarLynn Nemitz, “Male Librarians: Stereotypes and Role Models,” Image of Librarians in Popular Culture, Fall 2001; Amy P., “Librarian Who Hadn’t Updated Her Look In 8 Years Underwent An Extreme Head-To-Toe Makeover,” LittleThings, May 12, 2022; “So, what does a librarian do all day?,” Iowa State University University Library, Apr. 11, 2007; UNH Library, “The Top 10 Misconceptions about Libraries and Librarians,” The Charger Bulletin, Nov. 14, 2012; David Levy, “Reel Librarians: Images and Stereotypes of Librarians and Libraries in film and literature,” Proceedings of the 53rd Annual Conference of the Association of Jewish Libraries (Boston, MA – June 18-20, 2018), pp, 1-3; “How to Style Your Hair Into an Upside Down Bun,” StepByStep, accessed May 27, 2022; “More Librarian Misconceptions,” Bound: A Blog About Books & Libraries, Apr. 1, 2014; Glenn A. Hascall, “Larry & The Librarian,” accessed May 27, 2022; Megan Halsband, “Let’s Talk Comics: Librarians,” Headlines & Heroes, Library of Congress, Jul. 3, 2019; Jodi McFarland, “Saginaw Valley librarians ride Internet age forward,” mlive, Jul. 7, 2008;Michelle Reilly, “Librarians,” It’s a Dog’s Life, Jul. 10, 2008.

[6] Jesse Chadderdon, “Video: Librarians shake their book carts in national dance competition,” The Bulletin, Jul. 13, 2009; Eric, “One of the Wonders,” It’s all good, Jul. 8, 2007; Roger Ebert, “Party Girl,” Roger Ebert website, Jul. 7, 1995; Phyllis Korkki, “Spare a Hair Band? A Man Bun to Go,” New York Times, Jan. 26, 2012; “Hair Dos: 10 Beautiful Buns & Tucks,” The Frisky, Oct. 8, 2019; Lawrence Feldman, “The librarian’s bun — A ‘tail’ for the High Holy Days,” Times of Israel, Sept. 24, 2017; Emma Smart and Sarah Currant, “The 10 best librarians on screen,” BFI, Feb. 5, 2016; Ruth A. Kneale, “Librarians’ views of public perception in the Internet age,” You Don’t Look Like a Librarian!, Jun. 2002; Deliala Yasin, “Sexy Librarian Stereotypes,” Oct. 7, 2010; Kelly Jensen, “Queer Phobia and The Public Library,” Book Riot, Oct. 13, 2016; “Marian the Librarian – Pop! Profile,” Pop! Goes the Librarian, Jun. 7, 2012; “Image of Librarians,” LISWiki, Feb. 1, 2016; Caroline Murray, “What Do Men Think Of Buns?,” Stylecaster, Jun. 9, 2012; Heather, “Welcome to the Librarian Fashion blog!,” Librarian Fashion, Mar. 22, 2011.

[7] Pam Hayes Bohanan, “Librarians in Pop Culture,” Bridgewater State University, Sept. 12, 2013; “Librarian Stereotypes,” Life is Just a Bowl Full of Queries, Sept. 28, 2008; Jed Lipinski, “‘This Book Is Overdue!’: Hot for librarian,” Salon, Feb. 21, 2010; Joe Hardenbrook, “28 Lego Librarians (PHOTOS),” HuffPost, Oct. 5, 2013; Marcia J. Myers, “Images of Librarians in Science Fiction and Fantasy: Including An Annotated List,” Jun 1998, p. 3, 6, 8-9; “When it rains it pours… and other cliches,” lclibraries, May 28, 2013; Antoinette G. Graham, “Sign of the Librarian in the Cinema of Horror: An Exploration of Filmic Function,” Florida State University Libraries, 2010, pp. v, 12, 21, 23, 28, 47, 54; Carly Bedford and Chelsea Misquith, “Old Maid, Old Maid, How Librarians are Portrayed,” University of Toronto, 2015. Also see Kathleen Low’s book, Casanova Was a Librarian: A Light-Hearted Look at the Profession and another book by Ray Tevis and
Brenda Tevis entitled The Image of Librarians in Cinema, 1917–1999.

[8] Julie Manser, “Shushing the Librarian Stereotype,” Zócalo Magazine, Mar. 5, 2015; Monique L. Threatt, “Bad to the Bone, Librarians in Motion Pictures: Is It An Accurate Portrayal,” Indiana Libraries, The Image of Librarians, p. 7; Eric Sherman, “Librarians Confess Their Naughtiest On-the-Job Moments,” AOL, Oct. 8, 2013; Aaron Gouveia, “Librarians show off their moves,” Cape Cod Times, May 9, 2008; Arianna Rebolini, “Here’s What It’s Actually Like To Be A Librarian,” BuzzFeed News, Nov. 17, 2018; ““When they take of their glasses and put down their hair”: Defogging the Glasses Girl Stereotypes,” Things He Says, Feb. 17, 2016; Jenni Bean, “Teens rebel…. Library closes. WHAT?!?!,” My Life as a Married Super Librarian!, Jan. 2, 2007; Gabrielle Barone, “‘I don’t shush’: Local Librarians share their thoughts stereotypes rooted in their profession,” Daily Collegian, Penn State University, Nov. 15, 2017; Jeff Voyt, “Librarian Stereotypes,” A Year in the Life, Apr. 24, 2014; Macy Haford, “The New Sexy Librarian,” The New Yorker, Oct. 2, 2011;

[9] “On the Great Myth of the Librarian Grays,” Guardienne of the Tomes, Sept. 3, 2010; Jessamyn West, December 2002 entries,, Dec. 2002; “Katharine L. Kan, MLS,” Librarian to Librarian, accessed May 27, 2022; Bari L. Helms, “Reel Librarians: The Stereotype and Technology,” Masters Thesis, Apr. 2006, pp. 3, 5, 9-10, 256; David James Brier and Vickery Kaye Lebbin, Learning Information Literacy through Drawing,” Hawaii University, accessed May 27, 2022; Katy Shaw, “Buns on the Run: Changing the Stereotype of the Female Librarian,” University of Washington, October 2003; Chelsea Fregis, “Quick & Easy Curly Hair Styles for Finals Week,” NaturallyCurly, Nov. 7, 2011; Scholastica A.J. Chukwu, Nkeiru Emezie, Ngozi Maria Nwaohiri, and Ngozi Chima-James, “The Librarian in the Digital Age: A Preferred Nomenclature, Perceptions of Academic Librarians in Imo State Nigeria,” Library Philosophy and Practice, Dec. 2018, p. 5; Aja Carmichael, “The Changing Role of Librarians,” Wall Street Journal, Jan. 5, 2007; Ana Tintocalis, “Young, Hip Librarians Take Over,” KPBS, Jan. 10, 2011; “Hairstyle with Pins for Parties : Pinned to Perfection,” fashioncentrel, 2011; “Black History Month: Plainfield librarian challenged segregation, created literacy programs,”, Feb. 12, 2010; Eris, “The Bellydancing Librarian,” Nov. 21, 2013;Kay Oddone, “Change in the Library,” National Education Summit, Jan. 26, 2022; Genevieve Zook, “Technology and the Generation Gap,” LLRX, Aug. 27, 2007; Amanda Thomas, “Some minority librarians seeking to update image of white ‘bun lady’,” The Decatur Daily, Associated Press, Dec. 17, 2006. Also see the article entitled “The Graying of Academic Librarians: Crisis or Revolution?“, and many others, like: “Why I suck at blogging,” You have to go to college for that?!, Sept. 12, 2006; “Easy does it.,” You have to go to college for that?!, Jun. 24, 2006; Erin, “Gallery of Bellydancing Librarians,” The Bellydancing Librarian, Jul. 27, 2002; Dan Evon, “Tattooed Librarians Of The Ocean State Calendar Goes On Sale,” Inquisitr, Oct. 28, 2016; Kristy Gross, “Testing, Testing…,” Not Your Typical Librarian, Dec. 26, 2011; Jess Carter-Morley, “The updo is back,” The Guardian, Aug. 10, 2010; Regina Sierra Carter, “Librarians: Do Any Look Like Me?,” Inside Higher Ed, Mar. 29, 2017; Jack Broom, “Toymaker finds librarian who’s a real doll,” Seattle Times, Jul. 10, 2003; Leslie A. Pultroak, “The Image of Librarians in Poetry, 1958-1993,” MLS Research Paper, Kent State University, Aug. 1993; “Wend of the Webolution,” Anne of Green Labels, Mar. 12, 2009; Cynthia L. Shamel, “Building a Brand: Got Librarian?,” Searcher, Vol. 10, No. 7, Jul./Aug. 2002; Steven M. Bergson, “Librarians in Comics: Sources,” Aug. 17, 2002; Aimee Graham, “Debunking 10 Librarian Misconceptions,” INALJ, Jan. 12, 2015; Eliza, “7 Beautiful and Stylish Hair Dos to Give You a Whole New Look …,” All Women’s Talk, accessed May 27, 2022; Marcus, “Google Book Search and the Psychology of Librarians,” Marcus’ World, Apr. 28, 2007; Gabriel Spitzer, “Librarians Go Wild For Gold Book Cart,” All Things Considered, NPR, Jul. 13, 2009; Emelie Svensson and Evelina Magnusson, “Books, libraries and beige” [Abstract], Linnéuniversitetet, Institutionen för kulturvetenskaper, Dec. 31, 2012; Julie, “[Untitled],” A day in the library…, Jan. 24, 2010; Ruth Kneale, “Librarian Image Study,” Marketing Library Service Vol. 16, No. 8, Nov/Dec. 2002; Rachel Sawaya, “Ideas for a Librarian Costume,” eHow, accessed May 28, 2022; Sarika Sawant, “Women librarians in traditional and modern attires in India: Nationwide scenario,” IFLA WLIC 2018, pp. 1-17; Angeline Evans, “The librarian ‘do [outfit],” The New Professional, Jun. 2, 2011; Ted Menten, “The Naughty Librarian,” Sasha Street, Feb. 27, 2010; Manda Sexton, Samantha Reardon, Jennifer Carter, and Matthew Foley, “The Inked Experience: Professionalism and Body Modifications in Libraries,” Georgia Library Quarterly, Vol. 58, No. 4, Fall 2021, p. 1-2; Melissa Wooton, “Warrior Librarian: How Our Image is Changing (A Personal Look),” Indiana Libraries, c. 2003, p. 24; Catherine Butler, “[Review of] Margaret Mahy: Librarian of Babel,”Online Research @ Cardiff, Cardiff University, 2015, p. 3, reprinted from article of same name in Lion and the Unicorn, Vol. 39, No. 2, pp. 129-145; Miss Cellania, “Tattooed Librarians,” Neatorama, Aug. 3, 2009; Ellie D., “Bunning Without Breakage — The 5 Rules of Bunning Natural Hair,” BGLH Marketplace, Feb. 3, 2015; Adriane Alan, “Librarians in Children’s and Teen Literature,” Image of Libraries in Popular Culture, c. 2000, authorship shown here.

[10] “23 Types of Women’s Hairstyles – Do You Know them All?,” Headcurve, accessed May 27, 2022; Fiorella Valdesolo, “Why the Bun Is the Power Hairstyle of Our Multi-Tasking Age,” Vanity Fair, Apr. 4, 2019; Melanie Green, “Why Black people (including me) are cutting our own hair in Vancouver — and what that says about our city,” Toronto Star, Nov. 10, 2019; Amanda Thomas, “Some minority librarians seeking to update image of white ‘bun lady’,” The Decatur Daily, Associated Press, Dec. 17, 2006; “Hair Buns,” Black Hairspray, accessed May 27, 2022; “Is Fall Here, Yet?,” The Designer Librarian, Aug. 13, 2013; “Five-Minute Braided Bun,” A Beautiful Mess, accessed May 27, 2022; “Popular Ladies’ Hairstyles of the 1870’s,” Poughkeepsie Public Library District, accessed May 27, 2022; Tori, “12 Easy Messy Buns You Can Do in Under 5 Minutes,” TerrificTresses, accessed May 27, 2022; “How to Create Space Buns for a Fun, Effortless Look,”  Beauty Magazine, L’Oreal Paris, Mar. 21, 2022; Christine George, “How to Do a Quick and Easy Hair Bun,” WikiHow, Sept. 15, 2021; “How To Create A Messy Bun In 3 Just Steps,” Beauty Magazine, L’Oreal Paris, May 27, 2022; Andrea Haba, “40 Easy & Cute Bun Hairstyles Trending in 2022,” Hairtyle Camp, Jun. 1, 2020; “The History of the Hair Bun,” Vieda, 2017; Wes, “Hair History: Topknots & Buns,” Hairstory, Sept. 12, 2017; Ellie Crystal, “Hairstyles Through the Ages,” Crystalinks, accessed May 27, 2022; “The allure of the bun,” The Australian Ballet, Jan. 3, 2012; “Buns & Braids,” History & Culture of Chinese Women’s Hair, Apr. 28, 2019.

academic libraries animation comedy fantasy Fiction genres Librarians Libraries Pop culture mediums prison libraries public libraries school libraries speculative fiction underfunded libraries White people

Examining and analyzing the librarians in The Simpsons

An elderly librarian asks Homer Simpson to leave the library in “The Wizard of Evergreen Terrace”, questioning whether he is a “valid” patron

As I wrote about back February 2021, libraries appear repeatedly in The Simpsons, time and again. Instead of covering the episodes I mentioned in that post, [1] I’d like to focus on the librarians within the series, then later about the libraries in the series. There are at least fourteen librarians shown in the course of the series, and even more if some librarians are counted as different characters.

In “The Wizard of Evergreen Terrace”, Homer reads about Thomas Edison at the Springfield Elementary School library because they won’t let him in the “big people library” in downtown Springfield because of some “unpleasantness.” The school librarian, an elderly White lady, asks him if he is a student at the school, and he says yes. She undoubtedly kicks him out after that. She questions whether he is a valid patron, which is understandable, but it would have made more sense to have him go about his business in the library instead.

The same librarian appears again in “Brother’s Little Helper”, where she almost gets run over by Bart’s tank. In another episode, “Sweets and Sour Marge” there is a book sale at the Old Springfield Library, the main library in Springfield which apparently has a “serious bat problem in the filing cabinets,” and has old books like calendars and diaries. It is often visited by Lisa. In that episode, Homer mocks the library selling books, asking why he would want to buy books from the library. Comic Book Guy buys books on Spock and Scotty, Nick Rivera reads a book about human anatomy entitled Grey’s Anatomy, and Lisa buys a cart full of books, saying she has to “save” them after Marge tells her she can’t buy more than her weight in books. There is even a scene after this of the aforementioned librarian feeding chopping up books and feeding them to pigs, ha. No books are sacred here.

The episode also features another unnamed librarian who is working at the cash register and looks much more formal and proper than the above librarian. Marge convinces Homer to get a book entitled the Duff Book of World Records which has photographs of deformities, making him laugh. After Lisa says tavern, he drives to Moe’s because she said the word, with Marge yelling she never agreed to that rule. He later uses the book throughout the episode.

In another episode, “Eeny Teeny Maya, Moe”, Moe tells the story of surfing the web at the local public library with occasional drinking fountain breaks, where he is going back and forth with another woman, Maya. He then calls the “Crazy Cat Lady” a man, and she throws cats on him. He says he would do anything to chat with Maya apart from buying an actual computer. Maya calls him cute and he dances a little with the elderly librarian, who is confused by the whole ordeal, before he leaves the library.

She finally appears in “No Good Read Goes Unpunished”. In that episode, in which she closes the library with reduced hours of operation, because after a certain point in the day the silverfish take over the library. Milhouse is trapped inside while covered with silverfish, just wanting to renew his library card. After that, the Simpsons family goes to a book-themed department store, then a bookstore with old books, some of which Bart is interested in. Unlike her other episodes, she is voiced by Tress MacNeille rather than Maggie Roswell, who had voiced her in previous episodes.

The librarian says that the library has reduced hours because of the silverfish

Apart from her, there is another librarian (voiced by Tress MacNeille) who briefly appears in the episode “Bart the Mother”. She looks even more of a spinster librarian than any of the others shown so far. This is after Bart watches a film about taking care of birds from Troy McClure (voiced by Phil Hartman). This episode marks Hartman’s last speaking appearance. This librarian tells Reverend Lovejoy that he has checked out the bible every weekend for the last nine years and asks him if it would be easier to just buy a Bible instead. He says he could do that on a “librarian’s salary,” implying that librarians make a lot of money, even though they do not. Although BLS statistics say that Librarians and Library Media Specialists earn an average of $60,820 per year, equivalent to $29.24 per hour, the more common Library Technicians and Assistants only earn, on average, $31,840 per year, equivalent to $15.31 per hour. That’s barely living wage! Disgusting if you ask me. That pay should definitely be higher, without a doubt.

There are two librarians that appear in the season 6 episode “Lisa’s Wedding”: a human librarian and a robot librarian. Lisa, in this future vision, goes to the reference desk where the librarian is and she types on her calculator and says that the book she needs was checked out by Hugh Parkfield. They both try to compete with each other in reading the book, then end up kissing one another. The one librarian quips that at one point Hugh and Lisa hated each other, then love each other, with the other librarian saying it doesn’t make sense to her because she is a robot, then her head melts. The voice actors of both librarians are sadly not known at this current time.

We also see other librarians in the series. This includes the library clerk in “Bart’s Girlfriend” voiced by Hank Azaria. He runs the young adult section at a library in Springfield and Lisa has a crush on him, while he also dates Jessica Lovejoy at one point. Lisa thinks she can “tame” him, even though she calls him “well-read and just a little wild.” There’s is, additionally, an unnamed prison librarian (voiced by Tress MacNeille)  in “Dial “N” for Nerder”. Lisa imagines herself as an older prisoner, with this librarian passing her jail cell with a trolley of books, asking whether she had Joyce Carol Oates. The librarian said she only had Danielle Steel, causing Lisa to scream in terror. This is significant because this librarian is perhaps the only prison librarian that I’ve ever seen in animation. Hopefully I see more in the future.

Prison libraries can be restricted, even though what they do can lead to empowerment of inmates. Such libraries, situated within prisons, can arguably be described as what Jeff Hirschy calls prison institutions, or those institutions in which a librarian or archivist “serves an oppressive higher power.” There is also an endless information void in prisons. In addition, grim prison life can eclipse the potential of prison library, and the service provided is not even. Some prison libraries are better than others. Furthermore, the case of Lisa, she is in a prison, rather than a jail, as a prison is operated at the state or federal level, housing inmates with long-term convictions while jails are run by a county or city, housing inmates who are awaiting trial or with short-term convictions. It makes sense there are library services in the prison she is in, because longer conviction terms of prisoners means that it is more likely there would be a library, while in jails, such libraries are less common. [2]

Lisa reacts in terror when she realizes that the prison librarian doesn’t have the book she wanted to read.

There are three other librarians I’d like to mention. The first two, an unnamed librarian voiced by Pamela Hayden and another named Martha voiced by Tress MacNeille are in the episode “The Color Yellow” and are hinted as lesbians, working at the Old Springfield Library. Martha tells Lisa that there are no books about Eliza Simpson, but she did find a cookbook by Eliza’s mother.

She calls Martha “the best” for finding this as Lisa and Marge read the book with a story about one of Lisa’s ancestors. Later, Lisa returns to the library and tells her about the film vault, giving her the key to it. The unnamed librarian asks Martha about the film vault and says that they hooked up there during the Christmas Party. Lisa then watched a documentary which interviews Eliza Simpson and continues to be disappointed. The unnamed librarian appears in the episode “Grift of the Magi” as well. In that episode, she is teaching a class in which they are trying to come with a name for a toy and Lisa gets in trouble for doing math in class, having to write on a chalkboard.

Then there’s Ms. Norton (voiced by Maggie Roswell), a librarian at Springfield Public Library, who “is on friendly terms with Lisa.” In the episode “Dead Putting Society”, Lisa says hello to her, as does a man named Ralph and a group of old men and women reading books. She helps Bart by showing him the card catalogs, finding him a book on golf putting. Bart is shown next carrying a stack of books, including a book by Lao-Tzu, The Tao-Te Ching. She even tells Bart they are borrowing the books, after he wonders if they can afford them.

Homer and the unnamed librarian in the Springfield University Library

Then in “Lisa the Greek”, Lisa goes to the very quiet public library, which has some new signs and banners up. Ms. Norton claims it has been a “madhouse” after Lisa says the signs are working, with Lisa then checking the card catalog, looking for books on football. Following this, in the episode “Homer Goes to College”, presumably the same librarian is shown with dark skin and hair. Homer, in one scene, wheels a stack of books out of the Springfield University Library, as she looks in, part of his cramming for a college test. Even in that episode, Maggie Roswell appears, although the librarian has no lines. [3]

Other than this, there is a brief scene in “Sideshow Bob Roberts” where Lisa and Bart go into the Old Springfield Library and bats come flying out of the card catalog. Then, in “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Marge”, Marge sneaks into the public library to find out about who Becky really is, and comes across a stories, while looking through the microfilm, which she thinks prove Becky as a bad person, but believes she has been unfair to Becky.

Then, in “Margical History Tour”, Lisa talks to an elderly librarian who says they don’t have books, but they are a multimedia learning center for those of all ages, but mostly bums. Lisa complains that there are hardly any books at all. Marge agrees to help them, saying she knows a little about history. Nelson later trips Milhouse and takes his book, hilariously declaring “the library, really is a great resource!,” adding that he only came in to trip nerds. Lisa later complains she can’t find anything on Sacagawea, beginning another story from Marge. She later tells Bart another story, this one about Mozart. Liza later criticizes Marge’s story, saying it sounds a lot like the movie Amadeus.

In many ways, this episode connects with technocratic themes which I wrote about this past August, noting an article about the technocratic library “of the future.” Such a library is possible with all the data collection today, even with datasets of certain people not collected at all, a date divide between those who are data-rich and data-poor. Some have argued that libraries need to encourage and help library patrons analyze and contribute knowledge which is created with this data, and called on libraries to create an inclusive climate so patrons can engage with this data. However, there continue to be data quality issues which plague researchers, even as there is push for open data, data literacy, critical skills by librarians despite the limits of data. [4]

An unnamed librarian dressed formally in a blazer and tie shown in the episode “Sweets and Sour Marge”, shown here operating a cash register

The main library in Springfield is more than than the one-story building which comprises the Springfield Public Library. [5] This library make an appearance in the episode “Like Father, Like Clown” when Lisa looks through the card catalog, looking for books on Judaism and takes notes on what she found. Bart comes with her and looks at pop-up books. He attempts to convince Krusty’s father to make up with him, using the knowledge that Lisa is finding. His attempts fail and Lisa gives him one last paper, hoping it will work, even though she calls it a long-shot to convince him, apart from learning Ancient Hebrew. At long last, they get through to him after Bart quotes from a book by Sammy Davis, Jr.

Then in the episode in “HOMЯ”, after the crayon is taken out of Homer’s brain, he becomes smart, and reading lots of books, just like Lisa. This also ends up changing his personality too. This is followed by a flashback in the episode “The Kids Are All Fight” in which six years prior, after a librarian read a book during storytime, Bart and Lisa fought, hitting each other with books, while Marge looks on, worried. Following this, A security guard then escorts them out, telling them in a quiet voice to leave, shouting as he opens the door to let them outside, not wanting such violence in the library. Finally, in “Looking for Mr. Goodbart”, Bart goes to the library to ask the librarian, possibly voiced by Valerie Harper who has voiced various characters over the years, how he looks up a word. He hands her his phone and asks how much he owes her. At first she hesitates, then asks him for five dollars, and pockets the money. BOO! Bad librarian!

On the whole, the librarians in The Simpsons episodes all have different styles. Some have a more relaxed style, while others are more formal. The episodes themselves consistently show libraries as places of information, learning, and knowledge, used especially by Lisa. The episodes also highlight information deficits. This includes silverfish causing a library to be closed certain hours, or another when a library is extremely scaled back (having no books on the shelves), justified by turning it into a multimedia center. The latter could almost be considered a criticism of efforts to undermine librarians and libraries across the U.S. It is equivalent to Philip J. Fry’s speech at the end of a Futurama episode which talks about the value of local libraries.

At the same time, some of the librarians can fall into existing stereotypes with spinster librarians, although others easily buck that, like the two lesbian librarians in “The Color Yellow.” Sadly, the librarians in the series are not very diverse. They are almost all White except for the one in “Homer Goes to College” and she is only shown briefly. Other series, like We Bare Bears, Welcome to the Wayne, What If…?, Elena of Avalor, and She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, to name a few, have done better than The Simpsons when it comes to showing librarians who are not White. Hopefully, this changes in future episodes as the show goes forward, but I’m not going to hold my breath for that, as the show has become a bit of a zombie series.

The two lesbian librarians making eyes at one another at one point during the episode “The Color Yellow”

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] I’m talking about “Bart the General,” and “Cape Feare,” or the library jokes in “Marge the Lam” and “Last Tap Dance in Springfield” or the mentions in “Much Apu About Nothing,” “Bart After Dark,” “I Love Lisa,” “Lisa’s Substitute,” “Lady Bouvier’s Lover,” “Homerpalooza,” “One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish,” “Homer vs. Patty and Selma,” “You Only Move Twice,” “Treehouse of Horror VI,” “Krusty Gets Busted,” and “Some Enchanted Evening.”

[2] Jeff Hirschy, “Social Justice and Birmingham Collecting Institutions: Education, Research, and Reference Librarianship” in Reference Librarianship & Justice: History, Practice & Praxis (ed. Kate Adler, Ian Beilin, & Eamon Tewell, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2018), p. 90 and also discussed briefly on page 91; Kate Adler, “Towards a Critical (Affective) Reference Practice: Emotional, Intellectual and Social Justice” in Reference Librarianship & Justice: History, Practice & Praxis (ed. Kate Adler, Ian Beilin, & Eamon Tewell, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2018), p. 107; Emily Jacobson, “Reference by Mail to Incarcerated People” in Reference Librarianship & Justice: History, Practice & Praxis (ed. Kate Adler, Ian Beilin, & Eamon Tewell, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2018), p. 157; Erin Rivero, Marisa Hernandez, Stephanie Osorio, and Vanessa Villareal,  “Dispatches from the Field of Prison Librarianship” in Reference Librarianship & Justice: History, Practice & Praxis (ed. Kate Adler, Ian Beilin, & Eamon Tewell, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2018), p. 165, 167; Joshua Finnell, “2596 Girl School Road: The Indiana Women’s Prison Far-Away Reference Desk” in Reference Librarianship & Justice: History, Practice & Praxis (ed. Kate Adler, Ian Beilin, & Eamon Tewell, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2018), p. 114.

[3] She also appears in “Marge On The Lam” with brown hair, at the very beginning of the episode, sitting at a table, as part of a pledge drive, by a phone. She is not shown in a library during the episode.

[4] Julia Marden, “The Case for Critical Data Reference in Public Libraries” in Reference Librarianship & Justice: History, Practice & Praxis (ed. Kate Adler, Ian Beilin, & Eamon Tewell, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2018), p. 189-193, 195-7.

[5] The Springfield Public Library is also mentioned in the episode “Much Apu About Nothing”. It also apparently appears in The Simpsons Movie, the comic book “A Chair of One’s Own” and the video games Virtual Springfield, and The Simpsons: Hit and Run. The library is also shown briefly in the beginning of the episode “Lost Verizon” when Nelson is holding Martin Prince. As for the Old Springfield Library  also appears in The Simpsons: Tapped Out and is pictured in “Separate Vocations”. I believe the same is the case in the episodes “Dog of Death”, and “In Marge We Trust”.

action adventure animation anime comedy Comics fantasy Fiction genres Librarians Libraries Movies mystery Pop culture mediums public libraries romance school libraries speculative fiction webcomics

Recently added titles (February 2023)

A villain transforms into a stereotypical librarian and annoys a Black girl
The Beyonder shapeshifts into the librarian and surprises Lunella who is trying to divide her project into pieces, so Eduardo doesn’t mess it up. His appearance embodies the stereotypical depiction of librarians.

Building upon the titles listed for July/August, September, OctoberNovember, and December 2021, and January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, and December of 2022, and January of this year this post notes recent titles with libraries or librarians in popular culture which I’ve come across in the past month. Each of these has been watched or read during the past month. Not as many animated series or anime with libraries this past month, but I did come across a good deal in comics, and hopefully there will be more that I find in the days, weeks, and months to come. That’s my hope at least.

Animated series recently added to this page

  • Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur, “The Beyonder”

Anime series recently added to this page

  • The Magical Revolution of the Reincarnated Princess and the Genius Young Lady aka Tensei Oujo to Tensai Reijou no Mahou Kakumei, “The Magic Lecture of the Founder and the Assistant”

Comics recently added to this page

  • Daybreak, “Episode 46”
  • Ice Cold, “Bonus Episode: Hard questions”
  • I Seduced the Hero’s Mother, “Episode 10”
  • The Vampire Librarian, “Part 36”
  • Vixen: NYC, “Episode 40”
  • Vixen: NYC, “Episode 40”
  • WBM: Black Joy Anthology, “Bakery Man – 2”

Films recently added to this page

None of this month

Other entries recently added to this page

None of this month


© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.

Thank you to all the people that regularly read my blog. As always, if you have any titles you’d like to suggest, let me know. Thanks!

action adventure animation Black people comic books Comics fantasy Fiction genres Librarians Libraries live-action magic libraries Movies Nigerian people Pop culture mediums public libraries school libraries speculative fiction

Black History Month special: Examining ten Black fictional librarians

Clara doing exercises on the balcony of her apartment at the end of the final episode of Welcome to the Wayne

On this blog, I’ve occasionally written about Black librarians in fiction and am trying to write about it more, as long as I can find characters to write about. In fact, in The Public, a film by Emilio Estevez, which I reviewed in one of this blog’s first posts, appears a Black man named Mr. Anderson. Voiced by Jeffrey Wright, he is unique as he is a Black library administrator, something which is sadly seen too little in pop culture. In this first post for Black History Month, I’d like to highlight librarians I’ve written about on this blog and beyond.

With White librarians as the norm, so-called “diverse librarians”, which is code for non-white, are said to be “in demand”. Some have even said in response that their librarianship is not for White people and they are not the folks they are trying to reach or center in their work. [1] However, fictional Black librarians often can’t choose which patrons they are serving. In fact, the unnamed Black male librarian in a We Bare Bears episode (“Our Stuff”) and a Black woman named Lydia Lovely in Horrid Henry episode (“Horrid Henry: Computer Whizz”) serve multiracial and multiethnic patrons.

Furthermore, in keeping with past practices in animation, which have seemingly been retired, for the most part, some Black fictional librarians were voiced by White people. One example of this is Ms. Lovely, voiced by Joanna Ruiz, a White woman. Kimberly Brooks turned this paradigm around, however, when she voiced a strict White female librarian in an episode of DC Super Hero Girls.

There are a few Black fictional librarians who shine through, however. Most prominent is Clara Rhone in Welcome to the Wayne. She is a Black woman and is voiced by Harriet B. Foy. Although she is not a main character, she is an oft supporting character who runs the Stanza, a magical library hidden within the Wayne apartment building. She does not do all the work on her own, but is, instead, helped by non-human library workers who fetch books for her, and help her to ensure that the library remains organized for anyone who can use it. She becomes a central part of the story as Ansi Molina, Olly, and Saraline Timbers work together uncover the Wayne’s mysteries before it is too late.

Just as prominent is O’Bengh / Cagliostro in an episode of What If…? (“What If… Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands?”). He is a Nigerian man and is voiced by Ike Amadi. He tries to help Doctor Strange harness his powers and attempts to tell him to not go to the side of evil. Although he is unsuccessful, he remains an important part of the episode. Unfortunately, his character carries with it the implication that librarians are magicians and that what they do is “magic.” This can’t be further from the truth. In some ways, however, this is inevitable as his character is a sorcerer, so there was no way they could have gotten around this when depicting him in the episode. It is further disappointing that he will likely never appear again in the series, meaning this episode is his one and only episode, becoming one-episode-wonder, nothing more, nothing less.

Then there’s George and Lance in She-Ra and the Princesses of Power. They are gay Black men who are voiced by Regi Davis and Chris Jai Alex respectfully. Although both are technically historians, they are de facto librarians as they run, and live-in, a library in the Whispering Woods. Although they only appear very infrequently in the series, the episodes they do appear in they have an impact. They help the protagonists solve a riddle which leads them to a barren desert, and uncover the clues needed to uncover the biggest mystery of all about the planet of Etheria. On top of all of that, they are supportive of their son, Bow, who reveals he is a fighter for the rebellion. Even though they are opposed to joining in as part of the fight by themselves, which led him to come up with an elaborate story that he was going to a boarding school, they don’t want to hold Bow back.

Marienne Bellamy and Amarie Treadeau
Marienne Bellamy (left) and Amarie Treadeau (right)

Now, there are many other Black fictional librarians out there, with those in major film roles described by Jennifer Snoek-Brown on her Reel Librarians blog. I haven’t seen the psychological thriller series, You, but there is a smart, non-nonsense librarian named Marienne Bellamy (played by Tati Gabrielle) who observes the citizens of the neighborhood but does not get taken in by the entitlement and privilege of the patrons. While she holds in her own personal struggles, she is helped by another librarian, Dante Ferguson, a White male family man with damaged eyesight who wants to expand his family. [2]

Then, there’s Amarie Treadeau, otherwise known as “Amma”, who is voiced by Viola Davis, in Beautiful Creatures, a 2013 romantic fantasy film. She is the combination of two characters from the 2009 novel of the same name by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. She is wicked smart, skilled with magic, brave, and well-read. Davis described her character as more than what is on the surface, a person with “different secrets to be discovered,” including a tribal scarification on her back, channeling spirits, and serving as a “keeper of a library that’s the gateway to different worlds.” Davis further said she liked that, saying she likes “when there are different layers to peel away,” adding that “it was just subtle enough to play and to craft” and saying that this is what appealed to her about the role.” [3]

These are not the only Black librarians in fiction, however. One of the most prominent is Valerie the Librarian, who appears in multiple issues of Spidey Super Stories. She also appears in episodes of The Electric Company, where she is voiced by Hattie Winston. In her role, she often bucks stereotypes of Black women and of librarians, sometimes at the same time! She is clearly a groundbreaking character, even though she doesn’t appear as much in the comics as she should.

As for this blog, it has come a long way from August 2020, when I said that George and Lance where “the only non-white (and Black) librarians in animation” I could think of off hand. Then in March 2021, I wrote about them in a guest post for Reel Librarians. Since then, I’ve written about Clara Rhone in Welcome to the Wayne, Black librarians in stock footage and GIFs, Black voice actors, depictions of librarians of color (including Black characters) and the micoaggressions they face, and more. Although I hope to come across more Black librarians in fiction, I have a sinking suspicion that come next year and I’ll have the same number of Black librarians listed on this blog as before. Here’s to hoping that I come across Black librarians in the future!

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] David James Hudson, “The Whiteness of Practicality” in Topographies of Whiteness: Mapping Whiteness in Library and Information Science (ed. Gina Schlesselman-Tarango, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2017), p. 218, 220; Jorge R. Lopez-McKnight, “My Librarianship is Not For You” in Topographies of Whiteness: Mapping Whiteness in Library and Information Science (ed. Gina Schlesselman-Tarango, Library Juice Press: Sacramento, CA: 2017), p. 268.

[2] Petski, Denise. “‘You’ Season 3: Saffron Burrows Upped To Series Regular, Dylan Arnold, Tati Gabrielle Among 12 Cast In Netflix Series.” Deadline, Nov. 18, 2020. Also see the You (TV series) Wikipedia page. Bellamy appears in multiple episodes and becomes the titular deuteragonist in the second half of the show’s third season.

[3] Snoek-Brown, Jennifer. “A reel librarian’s multi-faceted role in ‘Beautiful Creatures’ (2013).” Reel Librarians, Feb. 10, 2021; Wood, Rachel Noelle. “The Best Fictional Librarians from Popular Culture.” KQED, Apr. 11, 2017; The Caster Chronicles Wiki. “Marian Ashcroft.” Last modified Jan. 16, 2020, see “Appearance and Personality” section; Kroll, Justin. “Viola Davis books two feature roles.” Variety, Feb. 2, 2012; Anderton, “Viola Davis Lands Roles in ‘Ender’s Game’ and ‘Beautiful Creatures’,” FirstShowing.Net, Feb. 3, 2012; “Viola Davis: The Beautiful Creatures Interview,”, Sept. 18, 2017

animation anime Comics fantasy Fiction genres Japanese people Librarians Libraries Movies Pop culture mediums romance school libraries speculative fiction

Recently added titles (January 2023)

Yumi, in episode 6 of Maria Watches Over Us, tells Yoshina she came to the library to get a book on Rosa catina, but does not know the student librarian she talked to was actually Rosa Catina herself, the “enemy” of the student council!

Building upon the titles listed for July/August, September, OctoberNovember, and and December 2021, and January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, and December of 2022, this post notes recent titles with libraries or librarians in popular culture which I’ve come across in the past month. Each of these has been watched or read during the past month. Not as many animated series or anime with libraries this past month, but I did come across a good deal in comics, whether in graphic novels or webcomics, and hopefully there will be more that I find in the days, weeks, and months to come. That’s my hope at least.

Animated series recently added to this page

None for this month.

Anime series recently added to this page

  • Don’t Toy with Me, Miss Nagatoro, “Senpai, don’t you ever get angry?”
  • Maria Watches Over Us, “Rosa Canina”
  • Maria Watches Over Us, “White Pedals”
  • Maria Watches Over Us, “The Yellow Rose at Full Tilt”
  • Maria Watches Over Us, “Codename Operation OK”
  • Maria Watches Over Us, “Crisscross”
  • Magical Girl Spec-Ops Asuka, “The Magical Girl Comes Back”
  • Ouran High School Host Club, “Starting Today You Are A Host”
  • Ouran High School Host Club, “The Job of a High School Host!”

Comics recently added to this page

  • Anemone in Heat, “Chapter 8”
  • Can’t Defy The Lonely Girl, “Chapter 3”
  • Diamond Dive, “Winter Special Part 2”
  • Daybreak, “Episode 39”
  • Fuwafuwa Futashika Yume Mitai
  • Glass Case, “Aires”
  • Glass Case, “Circinus”
  • Glass Case, “Sagitta”
  • Glass Case, “Fornax”
  • Glass Case, “Caelum”
  • Glass Case, “Mensa”
  • Glass Case, “Apus”
  • Glass Case, “Pisces”
  • Glass Case, “Virgo”
  • Glass Case, “Capricornus”
  • Glass Case, “Cancer”
  • Glass Case, “Cetus”
  • Glass Case, “Chamaeleon”
  • Glass Case, “Aquarius”
  • Glass Case, “Corvus”
  • Glass Case, “Equuleus”
  • Glass Case, “Triangulum”
  • Glass Case, “Microscopium”
  • Glass Case, “Canes Venatici”
  • Glass Case, “Grus”
  • Himawari-San
  • I Kissed a Succubus aka Watashi wa Succubus to Kiss o Shita 
  • Kuchibiru Tameiki Sakurairo
  • Kimi to Tsuzuru Utakata
  • My Masochistic Boss, “[S2] 8 – Different Worlds”
  • Nuku Nuku Toshoiin aka Snuggly Librarian 
  • Shitsurakuen aka Lost Paradise 
  • The Caged Bird Sings Themes of Love aka Kago no Shoujo wa Koi wo suru 
  • The Girlfriend Project
  • Vampire-chan x Junior-chan aka Kyuuketsuki-chan to Kouhai-chan 
  • Yuri Hime Collection 
  • Yuri Shimai

Films recently added to this page

  • x

Other entries recently added to this page

  • Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk [Video game]
  • Atelier Shallie: Alchemists of the Dusk Sea [Video game]
  • BanG Dream! [Music media franchise]
  • Conflict Girl [Visual novel]
  • ~Daydream Reconstruct~ [Visual novel]
  • Flowers [Visual novel]
  • Hanidebi! Honey & Devil [Visual novel]
  • Kamitsure [Visual novel]
  • Kohonya [Visual novel]
  • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Strikers [Anime TV series]
  • Man’in Chijo Densha 2 [Visual novel]
  • Once on a Windswept Night [Visual novel]
  • Please Be Happy [Visual novel]
  • Sakura Sadist [Visual novel]
  • Sono Hanabira ni Kuchizuke wo [Visual novel]
  • Touhou Project [Video game]

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.

Thank you to all the people that regularly read my blog. As always, if you have any titles you’d like to suggest, let me know. Thanks!

adventure anime comedy drama fantasy Fiction genres idol iyashikei Japanese people Librarians Libraries magical girl music Pop culture mediums school libraries speculative fiction supernatural

Countering the norm: Fictional librarians who sleep at the information desk

As anyone knows, sleep is important for everyone. When it comes to libraries, like the New York Public Library, and across society, there is a tendency to crack down on anyone who is sleeping, with illustrator Steve Teare describing it as a criminalization of a basic human need which targets “the poor, vulnerable, and homeless.” In contrast, there is a residential library in the UK, Gladstone, which doubles as a hotel, and a hotel in Tokyo which allows people to “sleep between bookshelves” to give two examples. [1]

Some librarians say that anyone who is sleeping has to be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. Others state that it doesn’t “cause any trouble” or say that it must be stopped because is a “public space” or “public shared spaces” and that can lead to other problems, declaring that “public libraries do not provide basic needs.” While the latter is true in a limited sense, it also comes off as elitist. It is less understanding than those who explain why homeless patrons can’t stay in a library overnight. Anti-sleeping policies come down on students, who some describe rightly as sleep-deprived, wanting a designated place to study, as working on one’s bed can “subconsciously affect” your sleep! [2]

Policies across libraries, however, vary. Some include bans on “excessive sleeping” or camping, allowing non-disruptive naps, or are discouraged for “security” and “safety”, wanting to avoid becoming shelters for the homeless no matter what, or even incorporating anti-homeless designs to prevent people from loitering and sleeping. This is despite the stories of homeless students who slept nights in library basements or students in Papua New Guinea who slept in a library after a fire razed their dorms. Such sleeping policies need to be, as one article put it, enforced against all patrons, not just the homeless, because they aren’t equal enforcement otherwise. [3]

Two fictional characters challenge this general paradigm, specifically in Laid-Back Camp and As Miss Beelzebub Likes, as they are librarians and they sleep while on the job! Being nothing like the Asian people sleeping in libraries focused on by undoubtedly racist Tumblr users, [4] it makes sense to analyze how these characters challenge existing perceptions of librarians in fiction and what it means for representation of librarians, and the library profession as a whole.

Saitou prepares to put a mountain in Rin’s hair in an episode of Laid-Back Camp

Rin Shima (voiced by Nao Tōyama) in the adventure iyashikei anime, Laid-Back Camp a.k.a. Yuru Camp, fits how librarians are oft-portrayed as she is a generally quiet girl. She’s probably socially awkward too, like other anime characters. With this, it comes at no surprise that she likes camping by herself, something which slowly changes over the course of the series. Rin is a student librarian who likely volunteers at her school and might even be receiving student credit for her library work.

During one episode, “Meat and Fall Colors and the Mystery Lake”, Rin puts down the book she is reading and is about to close the library, even opening up a portable grill she got. She chats with her friend, Saitou, who convinces her to give an energetic girl named Nadeshiko Kagamihara, a person who recently showed an interest in camping, a gift. Later, while shelving books, she finds Nadeshiko sleeping in the library and kicks her to wake her up. Despite this rude awakening, she happily accepts the gift from Rin, and even proposes barbecue camp to her which Rin accepts. Some librarians may wag their finger and say that you never kick patrons. I agree with that sentiment, even though Rin only very lightly kicked Nadeshiko to wake her up, but it is even richer based on what happens in other episodes.

Although in the episode “Cape Ohmama in Winter” and “The Izu Camp Trip Begins!” she is either awake, reading, and talking with someone about camping (either Nadeshiko or Ena) or just chilling in the library, like in “Winter’s End and the Day of Departure”, two episodes are different. Tired from her long day, in the episode “A Night of Navigator Nadeshiko and Hot Spring Steam”, Rin sleeps at the information desk. I can’t think of one library in the U.S. which would allow a librarian to fall asleep at the desk. Anyway, in a practical joke on her, Saitou plays with Rin’s hair, turning it into a mountain of some type. Later, she walks out of the school, not realizing what Saitou did to her hair, while other are shocked her hair is like that without thinking about it a second time. Its pretty hilarious.

That isn’t the last time she falls asleep in the library, either. At the end of the episode “Caribou-kun and Lake Yamanaka”, she also falls asleep at the information desk. Then she has a dream where she can hear the thoughts of every living thing. In short, it is somewhat hypocritical for her to kick Nadeshiko to wake up when she sleeps in the library herself! While some may say that Rin is wrong for this, she is more of a camper than anything else, and she likes to ride her moped. So, you could say she is a moped-riding student librarian. I can’t think of anyone else who fits that description.

Dantalion sleeping, with his eyes barely open

Rin is not the only librarian who sleeps on the job. One recurring character in the supernatural comedy anime, As Miss Beelzebub Likes, is plagued with sleepiness. Dantalion (voiced by Aoi Yūki), is part rabbit, and is the librarian of the Pandemonium Library. He apparently is so dedicated to his job that he reads but sometimes doesn’t eat, loving the smell of paper and ink. He is very knowledgeable about what is in the library’s stacks, filled with millions of books, and is hundreds of years old. He works alongside over 10 possible library assistants, and serves many patrons, as I counted at least 30 of them in “A Bit Bitter, Bibliomania”, the debut episode of Dantalion.

This isn’t the only time he is sleeping in the library. Although he has an annoying and loud friend, he remains attentive to the patrons. Unfortunately, has to deal with someone (Eurynome) having a crush on him because they weirdly see him as a little boy, which is known as shotacon. He is even helped by one of the recurring characters, Mullin, a young male demon who is an assistant of Beezlebub, current ruler of Pandemonium who secretly loves fluffy things, in the episode “They Pass Each Other by Sometimes / I had a Dream”.

Despite being frozen in ice in part 2 of the episode “Your Scent on a Cold Day”, he remains self-conscious and awake in his final episode appearance, “Her Assistant Knows Not Her Highness’s Heart / The Name of That Feeling Is…”. In those episodes he also continues to deal with his loud and annoying friend, while recommending to Beezelbub that she have a flower-viewing party. Then in the episode, “The Pandemonium Baths Are Great. You Should Visit”, he is lounging in the pool, reading a book, and is not in the library.

I do think it is interesting that Dantalion’s voice actor is a woman. I’m not exactly sure of the significance of his blue eyes, hair, and eyes, but I’m guessing it is symbolic somehow. He description of his character on Wikipedia says that he likes to read books at night, often falling asleep at the desk, even falling asleep while talking to others or even standing up! In some ways, he exhibits some librarians stereotypes, as he experiences Bibliomania and Bibliophilia.

Ratura “Rara” sees Lynette sleeping at the academy library in an episode of Lapis Re:Lights, who awakens her so they can perform in an orchestra together

It seems like a normal thing for people to get sleepy while they are at work. Often characters get sleepy in anime, but I don’t see it happening as much in Western animation. It especially doesn’t happen with librarian characters, as they are often portrayed as either stuck-up, curmudegonly, strict, or spinsters. While Dantalion is closer to information provider character type outlined by Jennifer Snoek-Brown, I’d say that Rin is an atypical character, in that her portrayal goes “beyond stereotypical constraints.”

Rin in Laid-Back Camp fits with the overall theme of iyashikei, a genre of anime which is “healing,” shying away from romance or action in favor of “meaningful connections with family and friends, and finding joy in the minutiae of life” as

The only series I can think of off hand which includes people directly sleeping in a library is We Bare Bears, with the librarian letting Chloe and her friends sleep in the library overnight! There isn’t any other Western animation to my knowledge which has such a plotline, apart from a sleep-deprived Blake in RWBY or Blinky in Trollhunters. Hopefully, this changes in the future with portrayals which are based more on reality, noting the hardships that librarians have to endure. Sadly, I am more confident that this is a possibility in anime than Western animation. [6] The latter too easily falls into the land of stereotypes, with their use as a result of hap-dash writing which would be better if the portrayals reflected reality, at least to the extent of what librarians experience.

© 2023 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] “Sleeping with Books,” Gladstone Library, accessed May 25, 2022; Ahmad Al Shirawi, “Book and Bed Hotel in Tokyo allows bookworms to sleep between bookshelves and live in the library,” Twitter, May 19, 2022.

[2] See responses by Valetta Cannon, James Taber, Peter Bartholoew, Becky Coleman, Kerry Hamlett Fountain, and Eric Erickson to the question “Should they allow sleeping in the library?” on Quora, along with pages on Quora entitled “Why aren’t you allowed to sleep in the library?“, “Why can’t citizens sleep at a public library? Isn’t sleeping your basic need?“, “Why can’t homeless patrons stay in the library overnight?“, “Is it ok to nap in a public library?“; and “Studying in the Library or at Home – What is Better for You?“, University of the People, 2022.

[3] “Library Sleeping / Camping Policy,” Indiana University, accessed May 25, 2022; “Can I take a nap or sleep in the Library?,” University Library, California State University San Marcos, accessed May 25, 2022; “Sleeping Policy,” Arizona State University, accessed May 25, 2022; Karen W. Arenson, “Yes, Some Students Live in the Library (But Not Like This),” New York Times, Apr. 27, 2004; Cailynn Klingbeil, No-sleeping rule at public libraries unwelcome change for Edmonton’s homeless,” Edmonton Journal, Apr. 13, 2015; Amy Mars, “Library Service to the Homeless,” Public Libraries Online, Apr. 26, 2013; Gloria Bauai, “Students sleeping in library after fire razed dorms,” The National, Mar. 18, 2022.

[4] Angry Asian Man, “asians sleeping in the library,” Angry Asian Man, Dec. 22, 2010.

[5]Marley Cursch, “Anime girls can finally chill,” Polygon, Aug. 17, 2021. The same article says that Iyashikei anime is seeing an increase in popularity, thanks to its “much-needed soothing effect on viewers,” and has a focus on the “smaller and more mundane, and…a heavy emphasis on visually stunning settings.” It also says that Laid-Back Camp takes “the chill vibes to the next level.” The article cites examples such as Flying Witch, Non Non Biyori (and all seasons on HIDIVE), Tamayura Hitotose, The Helpful Fox Senko-san, and Adachi and Shimamura all of which are on Crunchyroll, Yokohama Shopping Log which is an OVA, My Neighbor Totoro on the Internet Archive, Azumanga Daioh in HIDIVE, and Kuma Kuma Kuma Bear in Hulu.

[6] For instance, Myne is sleeping in a final scene of an episode of Ascendance of A Bookworm, or there is Operation Sleeping Books which is meant to transfer knowledge to the villain in R.O.D. the TV. There’s also Midori sleeping in a library basement in My-HIME and Aru sleeping in Kokoro Library, to give further examples.

academic libraries action adventure animation anime Comics fantasy Fiction genres Japanese people Librarians Libraries magic libraries Pop culture mediums public libraries romance school libraries slice-of-life speculative fiction webcomics White people

From Lilith to Amity: LGBTQ librarians shine through

Today is National Coming Out Day, a day to celebrate the act of “coming out,” i.e. when an LGBTQ person publicly shares their gender identity and/or sexual orientation. In honor of that, I’d like to highlight some LGBTQ librarians I’ve written about on this blog, this year and years previously, and others on the List of fictional librarians that I put together in late 2021.

Lilith in Yamibou

She is the caretaker of the Great Library (after Adam), and travels through much of the series with a girl she has a crush on, Hazuki, going through book worlds, looking for Eve. The latter is later shown as another caretaker of the library, who loves Hazuki. Part of her duty is to make sure worlds within the books are secure, an interesting job as a librarian. Due to the fact she is one of the protagonists of this series, who has considerable knowledge and wisdom, it means that libraries are still a key part of the series.

Anne and Grea in Manaria Friends

Anne is one of the protagonists who is a soft-spoken girl, Princess, and honor student at Mysteria Academy, a prestigious magic school. Anne even ventured through the “forbidden” archives of the library in order to find something which would cure Grea of a fever. She and Grea appear to enter a relationship later on. Both work in the library as assistants, although not as full-fledged librarians.

Sophie Twilight in Ms. Vampire who lives in my neighborhood

One of the protagonists of this anime, she drinks blood, but only when refrigerated, and she is shown weeding through her books in one episode. She has a refined appearance and liked going to comic book conventions. She brings in a high school girl, Akari, to live in her house, and appears to have feelings for her. Another vampire girl, Ellie, clearly is romantically attracted to her as well.

Fumi Manjōme in Aoi Hana / Sweet Blue Flowers

In one episode, she weeds books and remembers her kiss with Sugimoto. Later in the episode, she later talks with other students about the role and influence the Literary Club has on the library. In another episode, Fumi and Sugimoto go to the library and kiss there. Ultimately, Fumi at least knows some library skills, in terms of weeding, which is an important part of library work.

Chiyo Tsukudate in Strawberry Panic!

She works at the school library at Astrea Hill, known as Maiden’s Garden, and is a member of the literary club. She looks up to her fellow students and undoubtedly has a crush on Nagisa, one of the show’s protagonists. She checks out books and does other library duties well and efficiently. The library is a key location in the series.

Azusa Aoi in Whispered Words

In the episode “Did You See the Rain?,” she serves as the librarian in this episode, while the Girls Club members go on a treasure hunt to find a message, coming in and out of the library throughout the episode. Later, Azuza joins them in their quest. Azusa is a studious person who reads during breaks and takes an interest in learning, perfect for a librarian. She is a fan of yuri and loves Masaka Orino, unaware it is Ushio‘s older brother.

Fumio Murakumi in Girl Friend Beta

Fumio and Erena

Although she was originally introverted and lonely, she got more friends after meeting Erena. She works at the school library. Erena appears to be the closest one to her and both may be in a relationship with one another, although its implied.

George and Lance in She-Ra and the Princesses of Power

They call themselves historians, but run a family library/archives/museum. in a magical forest known as the Whispering Woods They are Bow’s dads. They are two middle-aged men and help the show’s protagonists translate an ancient message in the Season 2 finale. In a later episode, Bow and Glimmer meet George and Lance who tell them about an ancient rebellion and fail-safe on a superweapon. This information  becomes vitally important going forward.

Desiree in Too Loud

Desiree with her sister, Sara, and Sara’s friends at a slumber party

She is a trans woman. In an episode which was supposed to end the show, according to series creator Nico Colaleo, she begins to explore her trans identity, as she had been a closeted in her usual workday. This episode, “Slumber Party Sneak-In” was praised by reviewers. Desiree works every day with her sister Sara and co-worker Sarah at the local public library, but has a voice which is so loud, hence the name of the series, smashing library stereotypes along the way.

Amity Blight in The Owl House

Luz and Amity blush at one another in the episode “Through the Looking Glass Ruins”

She is a librarian who works at the Bonesborough Public Library, is a witch, and a student at Hexside Academy. Over the course of the story, her relationship with a human witch named Luz Noceda develops and later they begin a romantic relationship.

Sabine in Sabine: an asexual coming-of-age story

Sabine working at the library desk in episode 115.

The protagonist of this webcomic, Sabine works in the local school library as a part-time job, beginning early in the comic. She a fully committed asexual girl who tries to make friends and not have any romantic relationships, just like the comic’s author. The later also implies that she is, as a result, aromantic as well as asexual. Not all aromantic people are asexual, and vice versa. She is still learning more about herself all of the time, while she majors in history. As the comic’s author stated, Sabine is unaware of her asexuality, and isn’t sure she is aromantic, just that she isn’t ready for sex.

Mo Testa in Dykes to Watch Out For

Mo and Sydney

As the protagonist of this comic, and later comic book, she is a graduate of library school who worked at a feminist bookstore named Madwimmin Books, and appreciated “literary connectivity.” She is a committed lesbian feminist who later gets a job as a reference librarian. She has a lover in college named Clarice, but her eventual partner is a woman named Sydney. The comic’s creator, Alison Bechdel, recognized she was a lesbian after checking out books from the library, stating that an apparent “a key characteristic of queer people [is]…shamed persons who are drawn to lonely stacks and secret research,” and she worked at the circulation desk as a librarian while she was a college student, influencing the comic itself. She also stated that Mo had been drawn into “the pitfall of vocational awe, believing that her public library job is a religious calling.”

Concluding words

It is undetermined if Azusa Aoi in Whispered Words is LGBTQ. You could also argue that Kaisa in Hilda, a feisty character with unmatched knowledge of mystical items and cemetery records, who is a mysterious witch, is asexual based on her color scheme. There will likely be other LGBTQ librarians in the future, since many anime series have characters who go into libraries. [1]

© 2022 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


[1] This includes the Mysterious Library house base in Smile PreCure (an anime) and Marisa Kirisame frequently going to the library in Touhou Project (a video game). There are also apparent library scenes in Sono Hanabira ni Kuchizuke wo (a visual novel), Magical Girl Spec-Ops Asuka (Mahou Shoujo Tokushusen Asuka) (an anime), Himawari-san (a manga), Kimi to Tsuzuru Utakata (a manga), Maria-sama ga Miteru (a manga), Shitsurakuen (a manga), Kamitsure (visual novel), Märchen Mädchen (an anime), Flowers (manga), Roundabout of Yuri Hime Collection (collection),  Lyrical Nanoha, Yuri Shimai (manga), BanG Dream!, Kuchibiru Tameiki Sakurairo (manga), Himewari-san (manga), Yuri Shimai (manga), Kyuuketsuki-chan to Kouhai-chan (Vampire-chan x Junior-chan) (manga), Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk and Atelier Shallie: Alchemists of the Dusk Sea (video games), Conflict Girl (visual novel), Watashi wa Succubus to Kiss o Shita (manga), Fuwafuwa Futashika Yume Mitai (manga), Please Be Happy (visual novel), The Caged Bird Sings Theme Of Love (manga), Sakura Sadist (visual novel), A Piece of Candy of Yuri Hime Collection (manga), Once on a Windswept Night (visual novel), Yuri Hime Collection (manga), The Three-Second Rule of Yuri Hime Collection (manga), Nuku Nuku Toshoiin (manga), The Three Second Rule of Yuri Hime Collection (manga), Man’in Chijo Densha 2 (manga), Nozomi Kanaetamae ~Daydream Reconstruct~, and Kohonya (visual novel), and Hanidebi! Honey & Devil (visual novel).