English Hosts ‘Books Chat’ for UTA Community

What was the last great book you read? Do you recall what was going on in your life when you read it?

Literature and cultural history will be the topics of discussion during the Department of English’s “Great Books Chat” series, which begins Feb. 22.

The series, an informal gathering of UT Arlington faculty, staff and graduate students, is the brainchild of Senior Lecturer Dr. Toni Holland, who enjoyed a similar series during her stint at the University of Alberta in Canada.

“I loved attending the talks [in Alberta],” she said. “You are asking someone to share about their favorite book. It builds community. It brings us back to the love of reading and how we got to higher education in the first place.”

The series kicks off at noon Feb. 22 in Room 200 of Preston Hall with English department chair Dr. Wendy Fairs discussing Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf; Art and Art History’s Dr. Ben Lima talking about Thomas Bernhard’s Old Masters; and librarian Jody Bailey offering her thoughts on The Sparrow by Mary Dora Russell. The March 7 lineup includes professor and Honors College dean Dr. Karl Petruso (The Magus by John Fowles); English’s Dr. Kevin Gustafson (The Immoralist by Andre Gide); and Dean of Liberal Arts Dr. Beth Wright (The Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey).

Holland said the series will expand to weekly or bimonthly in the fall. For those interested in attending or participating as a presenter, contact Holland at toni.holland@uta.edu or Dr. Jackie Stodnick at stodnick@uta.edu.

(Story by James Dunning, COLA Communications)

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