Literature and Medicine 2016-7

We have a fantastic lineup this year, our 20th anniversary of the EMMC Literature and Medicine Book Club! EMMC Employees, family and friends can sign up here. 

  1. October 6: The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid.


The narrator of this novel is a young Princeton grad from Pakistan in a post-9/11 world. As the protagonist, Changez, finds moderate business success and romantic love in New York City, his heritage and identity will be lost in a sea of subtle and blatant bigotry as well as international politics.


  1. November 3: The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating, Elisabeth Tova Bailey.


At age 34, Bailey was stricken with a mysterious virus while on a trip to Europe. After her caregiver brings her a snail and establishes it in a terrarium, Bailey begins to read about snails, learning from scientists, early naturalists, poets, and writers. As she begins to understand a snail’s world, she finds the means to transcend her own circumstances. Bailey will attend the session via teleconference and will show the brief film she has made of the book.

  1. January 5: Plainsong, Kent Haruf.


Holt, Colo., a tiny prairie community near Denver, is both the setting for and the psychological matrix of this beautiful novel. Alternating chapters focus on eight compassionately imagined characters whose lives undergo radical change during the course of one year. In depicting the stalwart courage of decent, troubled people going on with their lives, Haruf’s quietly account illuminates the possibilities of grace.

  1. February 9: Antigone, Sophocles.


The curse placed on Oedipus lingers and haunts a younger generation in Sophocles’ classic drama. The daughter of Oedipus and Jocasta, Antigone is an unconventional heroine who pits her beliefs against the King of Thebes, challenging him for the right to bury her own brother. Determined but doomed, Antigone shows her inner strength throughout the play.

  1. March 2: Prayers & Run-On Sentences, Stu Kestenbaum.


Maine’s new Poet Laureate, Kestenbaum will join the group for a discussion of his poems, which are witty and wise and speak to the human experience.


  1. April 6: Bone Games: Extreme Sports, Shamanism, Zen, and the Search for Transcendence, Rob Schultheis.


Climbing in the Colorado Rockies, Schultheis has a fall that triggers an altered state of consciousness, setting him off on a quest to reproduce the experience. He ranges from Shamanism to long-distance running, mountaineering in Nepal, Plains Indian vision quests, and survival at sea. Schultheis could be the poster boy for the Sensation Seeker personality, defined by Wikipedia as a “trait defined by the search for experiences and feelings, that are ‘varied, novel, complex and intense’, and by the readiness to ‘take physical, social, legal, and financial risks for the sake of such experiences.’ Risk is not an essential part of the trait, as many activities associated with it are not risky. However, risk may be ignored, tolerated, or minimized and may even be considered to add to the excitement of the activity.”

EMMC Employees, family and friends can sign up here.








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