Emerson students aren’t the only ones who read on campus; Emerson has a book club for staff and faculty. Sponsored by the President’s Office and coordinated by HR’s Learning and Development Office and the Iwasaki Library, the book club has been meeting since March 2014. There are two sections, fiction and nonfiction, and members of each get together for lunchtime discussions once a semester and in the summer.
Group members suggest titles to read and vote on selections, with the person who suggested the chosen title usually serving as discussion leader. Past selections for the fiction group have included Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter and The Good Lord Bird by James McBride, while the nonfiction group has read Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin by Jill Lepore and
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou.
The book club has even read one Emerson author: faculty member Megan Marshall’s Pulitzer Prize–winning biography, Margaret Fuller: An American Life. Copies of the books are provided by the President’s Office. The books chosen for this summer are: The Tsar of Love and Techno by Anthony Marra (fiction) and Murder of the Century by Paul Collins (nonfiction). All staff and faculty members are invited to join the club, but it is mostly composed of staff members.
Cate HirschbieI (Iwasaki Library), who has been a member for one year, said that she enjoys the book club because she gets to read books she wouldn’t normally choose herself and meet staff from across the College. Maureen Tripp (Iwasaki Library), a founding member of the book club, enjoys it for the same reasons and added, “When I read a book for book club, I am a much more engaged reader. I want to be able to contribute, so I read more carefully and thoughtfully, take notes, and mark passages. And I always find the discussion gives me something to think about the book that I hadn’t noticed, so I come away with a deeper understanding. I think I’m a better reader because of the book club.”
Are you interested in catching up on some summer reading? If you would like to meet new people and read new books, please consider joining. Contact Abigail Erle to participate in the fiction group and Dan Crocker to participate in the nonfiction group.
Jill Davidson (Academic Affairs)