Campus News 2013

For Immediate Release
June 21, 2013

Schreiner University Announces Summer Read Program

Schreiner University Announces Summer Read Program

Community members are invited to read along with the Schreiner University community as they take a bite out of Max Brooks’ “World War Z.” The Schreiner University Summer Read program offers students and faculty a way to stay in touch over the summer as they indulge in a little light reading, discuss the work via an online blog.

On August 20, Dr. William Woods, dean of the school of liberal arts and professor of English, will host a brown bag lunch to discuss the novel. Woods also is the founder of the annual Schreiner Popular Culture Symposium.

“I’m so excited for this opportunity to chat with other zombie fans,” Woods said. “On the surface, our society’s recent fascination with the walking dead and other types of zombies is just good, creepy fun, but underneath that fascination I think something very profound is going on.”

This year’s Schreiner University Summer Read is being hosted in conjunction with its “Big Idea” theme which for the upcoming school year is entitled “Rights & Responsibilities.”

“For many students, coming to college is the first experience they have in exploring for themselves what their rights and responsibilities are,” said Dr. Charlie McCormick, SU vice president of academic affairs and provost. “Exploration quickly leads to an understanding that many—if not most—rights and responsibilities are constructed and negotiated by social and cultural groups.”

And how does a novel about zombies fit into that conversation? According to Woods, “It might seem a bit silly, but in every good zombie movie or novel or comic book—consider the wildly popular “Walking Dead” series—the central characters are continually wrestling with ethical questions.”

It is an opportunity to explore complex issues, Woods said. “There are always questions such as do zombies have rights? Who decides who lives or dies during a zombie assault? Who is responsible for restoring order during a time of chaos? Talking about rights and responsibilities in the context of a zombie pandemic helps us examine these issues from a distance and as outsiders. And, of course, it will be terrifyingly fun.”

Local readers are encouraged to begin reading World War Z and then log on to http://schreinerbigidea.wordpress.com to join the conversation.

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