Fall 2014 Recommendations

Fall 2014
When I Was a Child I Read Books

Marilynne Robinson is one of the best living writers in America. Much attention has been given, deservedly so, to her novels, but her essays are a remarkable testament to her commitment to a Christian understanding of the world and to her exceptional gifts of argumentation and language. She is convinced that neither the Bible’s most passionate and vocal defenders nor its harshest critics have spent sufficient time being chastened by its high demands on us, especially in regard to our stewardships for our minds, for our communities, and for the most vulnerable
among us.

—George B. Handley, Professor of Interdisciplinary Humanities
Sense and Sensibility

This summer I got around to reading a book—Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility—that I had long felt guilty about neglecting during my young adult years. I was won over by Austen’s wry and confiding tone. This is one quality of her work that film adaptations fail to convey: the sense that Austen is treating you like a trusted confidant, relaying her story and exploring human psychology with humor, generosity, and a sometimes teasing playfulness. Austen’s subtle and sophisticated treatment of human relations and psychology is both entertaining and enlightening; it ultimately prods you to think about your own thought patterns and actions with a more critical (albeit still friendly and forgiving) eye.

—Kerry D. Soper, Associate Professor of Interdisciplinary Humanities