Recommended Readings by Education Update’s Advisory Board (For additional member’s suggestions see the April 2006 Education Update)
Augusta Souza Kappner, President, Bank Street College of Education
Night by Elie Weisel
Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now by Maya Angelou
Harold Koplewicz, MD, Founder & Director of NYU Child Study Center Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (James Joyce); one of the first novels to use stream of consciousness writing, changing the way we look at narrative.
Mythology (Hamilton or Bulfinch)
Communist Manifesto (Marx); has there been a more powerful or influential text in the past 150 years?
The Bible; like it or not, the old testament stories explain the foundation of western morals; add to that the Bhagavad Gita, the Koran, and Siddhartha (Hesse) and you’ve got a pretty good spring-board for understanding the modern global society.
1984 (Orwell); portrayed the alienization of humankind from a totalitarian government, which “ruled” much of the world and frightened the rest of it for most of the past century
Hamlet or MacBeth (Shakespeare); probably the plays which epitomize Shakespeare the best
Hedda Gabler (Ibsen); toyed with the structure of the “well made play” and introduced modernism into drama
Absalom Absalom (Faulkner); a fantastic journey through the south and post-war southern guilt that helps to explain the south’s different line of development
Where the Wild Things Are (Sendak); wonderful children’s story about how kids employ fantasy to manage anger and fear
The Grapes of Wrath (Steinbeck); the struggle to provide for one’s children, change your future, and the settling of the American west
Fathers and Sons (Turgenev); a generative tale of striving for independence while trying to maintain closeness, sort of a Russian “rapproachment”
Night (Wiesel); a chilling portrait of the greatest tragedy humankind has ever witnessed
Grimm’s Fairy Tales (Brothers Grimm); for all the right reasons