Chautauqua is Reading Rushdie Together

header image: Reading Rushdie Together

We are keeping Sir Salman Rushdie in our thoughts as we continue to read and share his work. Starting on October 1, 2022, we invite you to read with us his novel, Midnight's Children. Each day, we will read together 10 pages and reflect on them.  Each day around noontime Chautauqua Literary Arts social media pages will post a sentence or short reflection on the passage read to which we ask that you add your voice. Ask your family, friends, and colleagues to join as well.
 

 

Midnight's Children: A Novel (Modern Library 100 Best Novels) By Salman Rushdie Cover Image

First 2023 CLSC Announcements

Two CLSC selections for 2023 have been announced!

photograph of Damnation Spring by Ash Davidson, with CLSC selection badgeThe Week Seven selection is Damnation Spring by Ash Davidson (Simon & Schuster).

Colleen and Rich Gundersen are raising their young son, Chub, on the rugged California coast. It’s 1977, and life in this Pacific Northwest logging town isn’t what it used to be. For generations, the community has lived and breathed timber; now, that way of life is threatened. Told in prose as clear as a spring-fed creek, Damnation Spring is an intimate, compassionate portrait of a family whose bonds are tested and a community clinging to a vanishing way of life. An extraordinary story of the transcendent, enduring power of love —between husband and wife, mother and child, and longtime neighbors. An essential novel for our times.

The Week Six selection is The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson (Hatchette Book Group). photo of The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson, with CLSC selection badge

The Ministry for the Future is a masterpiece of the imagination, using fictional eyewitness accounts to tell the story of how climate change will affect us all. Its setting is not a desolate, post-apocalyptic world but a future almost upon us. Chosen by Barack Obama as one of his favorite books of the year, this extraordinary novel from visionary science fiction writer Kim Stanley Robinson will change how you think about the climate crisis. 

CLSC Season Theme 2023: Imagination

Imagination is essential to storytelling and to our experiences of reading and learning. To imagine evokes the individual and the collective and invites all its users to be absorbed in creativity, resourcefulness, possibility, and insightfulness. Imagination encourages us to speculate, to conceptualize our past and present, and offer alternative futures as universes full of life and potential. To imagine, we must reflect on our history and epistemologies – how we know what we know – to consider our present as an assemblage of what could have been and what could be. When considering imagination, it’s essential to ask: What possibilities does individual and collective imagining hold for our world? How do we inspire imagination? How and why do we convey our imaginings to one another? Whose imagination becomes reality and why? Can imagination go too far? How do we promote imaginations that are more encompassing in their reaches, instead of those that benefit only a select few? The power of imagination is represented in various forms, such as stories, performances, campaigns, propaganda, national places, and societal norms. This year, the CLSC will explore imaginings old and new: from the muffled and the bold, to the comforting and the unsettling, the local and universal, and more.

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Damnation Spring By Ash Davidson Cover Image
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The Ministry for the Future: A Novel By Kim Stanley Robinson Cover Image
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Damnation Spring By Ash Davidson Cover Image
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The Ministry for the Future: A Novel By Kim Stanley Robinson Cover Image

CLSC Week Nine: "The Final Revival of Opal & Nev" with Dawnie Walton

The Week Nine CLSC selection features Dawnie Walton’s The Final Revival of Opal & Nev. Named a best book of 2021 by Barack Obama, The Washington Post, NPR, Esquire, Entertainment Weekly, Goodreads, The Millions, Reader’s Digest, and Kirkus Reviews, among others, The Final Revival of Opal & Nev is an electrifying novel about the meteoric rise of an iconic interracial rock duo in the 1970s, their sensational breakup, and the dark secrets unearthed when they try to reunite decades later for one last tour. This CLSC Author Presentation will take place at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 25, 2022, in the Hall of Philosophy. If you cannot join us on the grounds, you can join us from home on CHQ Assembly

The Week Nine CLSC Young Readers selection is Kate Milford’s The Raconteur’s Commonplace Book: A Greenglass House Story.

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The Final Revival of Opal & Nev: A Novel By Dawnie Walton Cover Image
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The Final Revival of Opal & Nev By Dawnie Walton Cover Image
The Raconteur's Commonplace Book: A Greenglass House Story By Kate Milford Cover Image

CLSC Week Eight: "Gunfight" with Ryan Busse

photo: Gunfight by Ryan Busse with CLSC badgeFor 30 years, Ryan Busse chased his childhood dream and built a successful career selling millions of firearms for one of America’s most popular gun companies. He is an avid hunter, outdoorsman, and conservationist–all things that the firearms industry was built on.

However, in Gunfight, Ryan argues that the gun industry has abandoned its self-imposed decency in favor of hardline conservatism and McCarthyesque internal policing, sowing irreparable division in our politics and society. America's gun industry has shifted from prioritizing safety and ethics to one that is addicted to fear, conspiracy, intolerance, and secrecy. He recounts his personal transformation and shows how authoritarianism spreads in the guise of freedom, how voicing one's conscience becomes an act of treason in a culture that demands sameness and loyalty.

Ryan Busse is a former firearms executive who helped build one of the world’s most iconic gun companies, and was nominated multiple times by industry colleagues for the prestigious Shooting Industry Person of The Year Award. Busse is an environmental advocate who served in many leadership roles for conservation organizations, including as an advisor for the United States Senate Sportsmen’s Caucus and the Biden Presidential Campaign. He remains a proud outdoorsman, gun owner, father, and resident of Montana.

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Gunfight: My Battle Against the Industry that Radicalized America By Ryan Busse Cover Image

"The home is the wellspring of personhood...When we try to understand ourselves, we often begin by considering the kind of home in which we were raised.”

Matthew Desmond, Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City book image: Evicted by Matthew Desmond

The Week Seven CLSC selection features Matthew Desmond’s Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City. MacArthur “Genius” Matthew Desmond’s Pulitzer Prize-winning bestseller Evicted draws on years of embedded fieldwork and painstakingly gathered data to transform our understanding of inequity and economic exploitation in America. This CLSC Author Presentation will take place at 10:45 a.m. on Tuesday, August 9, 2022, in the Amphitheater in collaboration with the Chautauqua Lecture Series. If you’re not able to join us on the grounds, you can join us from home on CHQ Assembly

The Week Seven CLSC Young Readers selection is Tae Keller’s Jennifer Chan is Not Alone. All interested young readers and family members should join us on Sunday, August 7, 2022, at 1:00 p.m. on the Hultquist Center porch for our book discussion and themed activity. 

This gathering will also feature our Early Reader’s selection, Mi Casa is My Home by Laurenne Sala and Zara González Hoang. We encourage you to read our CLSC Young Reader Classic Selections for this summer: The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros and Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie. 
 

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Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City By Matthew Desmond Cover Image
Jennifer Chan Is Not Alone By Tae Keller Cover Image
Mi Casa Is My Home By Laurenne Sala, Zara González Hoang (Illustrator) Cover Image
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The House on Mango Street (Vintage Contemporaries) By Sandra Cisneros Cover Image
Haroun and the Sea of Stories By Salman Rushdie Cover Image

“We are confined to the present, but this moment we’re living now has, for all of history, been the future. And now, forever more, it will be past. Everything we do sets off unforeseeable, irreversible chain reactions."

Maggie Shipstead, Great Circle

Thebook image: Great Circle by Maggie Shipstead Week Six CLSC selection features Maggie Shipstead’s Great Circle. Great Circle is a “masterclass in historical fiction” according to The Telegraph. In effortless and dazzling prose, Maggie Shipstead weaves together an expansive story that covers more than a century. This CLSC Author Presentation will take place at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 4, 2022, in the Hall of Philosophy. A book signing will follow on the porch of Alumni Hall. If you’re not able to join us on the grounds, you can join us from home on CHQ Assembly

Don’t miss the CLSC Book Discussion on Monday, August 1, 2022, at 12:15 p.m. on the porch of the Literary Arts Center at Alumni Hall (and streamed live via the Chautauqua Literary Arts Facebook page) featuring co-presenters Dr. Susan Allen and Melanie Ritzenthaler.

The Week Six CLSC Young Readers selection is Edith’s graphic novel rendition of the classic Tom’s Midnight Garden.

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Great Circle: A novel By Maggie Shipstead Cover Image
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Great Circle: A novel By Maggie Shipstead Cover Image
Tom's Midnight Garden Graphic Novel By Philippa Pearce, Edith (Illustrator) Cover Image

“Knowledge can be very valuable... but only if people want it. If they don't, it can be worse than useless.”

Anna North, Outlawed book image: Outlawed by Anna North with CLSC selection badge.

The Week Five CLSC selection features Anna North’s Outlawed. Centered on irresistibly no-nonsense, courageous, and determined heroine, Outlawed dusts off the myth of the old West and reignites the glimmering promise of the frontier with an entirely new set of feminist stakes. This CLSC Author Presentation will take place at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 28, 2022, in the Hall of Philosophy. A book signing will follow on the porch of the Alumni Hall. If you cannot join us on the grounds, you can join us from home on CHQ Assembly.

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Outlawed By Anna North Cover Image
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Outlawed By Anna North Cover Image

"Empathy is no substitute for the experience itself...And people who have hit the caste lottery are not in a position to tell a person who has suffered under the tyranny of caste what is offensive or hurtful or demeaning to those at the bottom."

Caste with CLSC badge Isabel Wilkerson, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents

Week Four's CLSC selection features Isabel Wilkerson’s Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents. This book examines the unspoken caste system that has shaped America and shows how a hierarchy of social divisions still defines our lives. This CLSC Author Presentation has been postponed. Chautauqua is working with Ms. Wilkerson to reschedule the program to happen in the Fall or online.  That should give you plenty of time to read it beforehand!

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Caste (Oprah's Book Club): The Origins of Our Discontents By Isabel Wilkerson Cover Image
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Caste (Oprah's Book Club): The Origins of Our Discontents By Isabel Wilkerson, Robin Miles (Read by) Cover Image

"I have evolved from being a detached skeptic of civil resistance to becoming an invested participant...I now study the history and practice...with much greater urgency, for the sake of my own democracy and in solidarity..."

book image: Civil Resistance by Erica Chenoweth with CLSC badge

-- Erica Chenoweth, Civil Resistance: What Everyone Needs to Know

The Week Three CLSC selection features Erica Chenoweth’s Civil Resistance: What Everyone Needs to Know. In this book, Chenoweth — one of the world’s leading scholars on the topic–explains what civil resistance is, how it works, why it sometimes fails, how violence and repression affect it, and the long-term impacts of such resistance. Featuring both historical cases of civil resistance and more contemporary examples such as the Arab Awakenings and various ongoing movements in the United States, this book provides a comprehensive yet pithy overview of this enormously important subject. This CLSC Author Presentation will take place on Thursday, July 14, 2022, at 3:30 p.m. in the Hall of Philosophy. A book signing on the porch of the Literary Arts Center at Alumni Hall will follow. This CLSC Author Presentation will be streamed live on CHQ Assembly and be available on-demand for the following week. 

Don’t miss the CLSC Book Discussion on Monday, July 11, 2022, at 12:15 p.m. on the porch of the Literary Arts Center at Alumni Hall with co-presenters Philip Allen and Margaret Edwards.

“To love a place is not enough. We must find ways to heal it.”

image: Braiding Sweetgrass [book] with CLSC badgeRobin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants

The Week Two CLSC program features Robin Wall Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teaching of Plants. Drawing on her life as an indigenous scientist, a mother, and a woman, Kimmerer shows how other living beings—asters and goldenrod, strawberries and squash, salamanders, algae, and sweetgrass—offer us gifts and lessons, even if we’ve forgotten how to hear their voices. In a rich braid of reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she circles toward a central argument: that the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. This CLSC Author Presentation will take place on Thursday, July 7, 2022, at 3:30 p.m. in the Hall of Philosophy. A book signing on the porch of the Literary Arts Center at Alumni Hall will follow. 

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Braiding Sweetgrass By Robin Wall Kimmerer Cover Image
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Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants By Robin Wall Kimmerer Cover Image
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Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants By Robin Wall Kimmerer, Robin Wall Kimmerer (Read by) Cover Image

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