Public Seminar in Thoughtful Reading

Public Seminar in Thoughtful Reading
Grand Rapids Public Library’s Main Branch, 4th floor
7-9pm Thursday Evenings from September 26th to November 7th

A free public seminar will be meeting weekly at the library to read a few classic short stories to see if they can teach us anything about how to live a good life.  Each meeting will rely on active discussion, so attendance and participation is very important.  There will be copies of the stories available when we meet, and those who finish the seminar will receive a free copy of one of the books that we will be using: “The World’s Greatest Short Stories” (Dover Thrift Editions).  Free food and refreshments will be available!

The objectives for the meetings:
• Understand the fundamental effects that storytelling has on human life
• Become more aware of the limitations of our perspectives and more
excited to develop ourselves beyond our limitations
• Stimulate our appetite for reading
• Nourish our ability to imagine and reflect
• Recall the importance of asking why

If you plan to attend or have any further questions, please email Drew at

One Response to “Public Seminar in Thoughtful Reading”

  1. October 7, 2013 at 6:23 pm #

    Here is the list of possible readings that we will be working from:

    -Meno, Apology, Phaedo – Socratic Dialogues

    -Plato on Rhetoric and Poetry

    -Nicomachean Ethics (442-454 and 529-537) – Aristotle

    -Thus Spake Zarathustra – Friedrich Nietzsche

    -Borges & I, The Immortal – Jorge Luis Borges

    -Storyteller – Leslie Silko

    -The Garden Party – Katherine Mansfield

    -The Necklace – Guy De Maupassant

    -Phoenix Arizona – Sherman Alexie

    -The Second Bakery Attack – Haruki Murakami

    -Good Country People – Flannery O’Connor

    – The Hunger Artist – Franz Kafka

    -Patriotism – Yukio Mishima

    -Harrison Bergeron – Kurt Vonnegut

    -The Queen of Spades – Alexander Pushkin

    -The Interpreter of Maladies – Jhumpa Lahiri

    -The Last Question – Isaac Asimov

    -The Mark on the Wall – Virginia Woolf

    -The Guest – Albert Camus

    -A Work of Art, Reading, Life as a series of questions and exclamations – Anton Chekhov

    -The Sacrificial Egg – Chinua Achebe

    -In the Basement – Isaac Babel

    -Signs and Symbols – Vladimir Nabokov

    -Everyday Use – Alice Walker

    -The Grasshopper and the Bell Cricket – Yasunari Kawabata

    -Araby – James Joyce

    -Pastoralia – George Saunders

    -Mario and the Magician – Thomas Mann

    -Where are you going, Where have you been? – Joyce Carol Oates

    -How Much Land Does a Man Need?, The Three Questions – Leo Tolstoy

    -Good Old Neon, David Foster Wallace

    -King of the Bingo Game – Ralph Ellison

    -The Yellow Wallpaper – Charlotte Perkins Gilman

    -The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

    -Aesop’s Fables

    -The Story of the Taoist Farmer

    -Other classic myths and parables