English Department "Big Read"
“Because survival is insufficient.” Now, when support for the humanities is more important than ever, this motto (From Station Eleven by way of Star Trek) seems appropriate in and out of the world Mandel has created. Station Eleven is an ideal choice for our inaugural “Big Read.” The work is critically acclaimed: National Book Award and PEN/Faulkner Award finalist in 2014; and Arthur C. Clarke Award and Toronto Book Award winner in 2015. Although readily classified as science fiction, the book also invites discussion and collaboration with readers of many other genres and interests. The book’s representation of the killer “Georgia flu” lends itself well to discussions by writers and epidemiologists alike, bringing faculty and attendees together in interdisciplinary conversation. The persistence of Shakespeare after the apocalypse triggers questions about great art and an enduring canon of literature, and the book’s traveling troupe of actors could profitably be compared to Elizabethan troupes performing in Shakespeare’s own day, or even contemporary itinerant players, such as the Stone Soup Shakespeare Company, which tours much the same route covered by the players in Station Eleven, our own Midwestern parks and towns.
Spring 2018 Events
Presentation of The World Without Us, April 13 & 14, Loeb Playhouse, 8:00 pm.
Join the English Department every Thursday in February for Books & Coffee.
This year's theme will be science fiction / dystopian / post-apocalyptic books.
Emily St. John Mandel will be our distinguished guest speaker at the Literary Awards Banquet and Reading on Thursday, April 19, 2018.