Shared Reading

Purpose

The Walker College of Business Shared Reading Initiative brings students, faculty and staff together to read and discuss a work on social and/or environmental justice. The work selected will highlight ways business can help achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The shared reading book is selected by the office of Global and Civic Engagement, with input from the Inclusive Excellence Liaisons and/or the Sustainability Steering Committee.

Structure

Faculty/Staff Reading

Faculty and staff read and discuss the selected work in the spring semester. Faculty are encouraged to incorporate the book into their courses for the following academic year. 

Student Reading

The following academic year, business students read the selected book and attend a book discussion, either as part of their academic courses or as an optional personal enrichment activity.

2021 Book Selection


Citation

Coates, Ta-Nehisi. Between the World and Me. New York: Spiegel & Grau, 2015.

Book Access

Walker College of Business faculty and staff who will incentivize student participation in the 2021 Student Shared Reading Program should sign up by August 10 to receive a free copy of "Between the World & Me." Student sign-up will open soon.

Limited access to e-book and audio formats and to hardback editions are available through the Appalachian State University Belk Library.

The Between the World and Me documentary, based on the book, is available to watch through the Appalachian State University Belk Library.

Shared Reading Events

Join the conversation! This is an in-person event with a Zoom attendance option for off-campus participants.

Shared Reading Book Discussion - October 29, 2021, 1-2:30 pm, PSU 137, Grandfather Ballroom, Zoom registration link (for hybird option)

Add to Google Calendar  

In a uniquely formatted book discussion, Lamont Sellers, director of intercultural student affairs at Appalachian State University, will lead a conversation on the book "Between the World and Me." Written by Ta-Nehisi Coates as a letter to his teenage son, the book is a powerful exploration of what it means to be Black in the US. The conversation is geared toward students who have participated in the Shared Reading Initiative, but is open to all interested students, faculty and staff.

Moderator:
Lamont Sellers, Director of Intercultural Student Affairs

Panelists:

Dr. Alex Howard, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
Dontrell Parson, Director of Graduate Admissions
Jawoin Williams, Coordinator, University Housing

 

Questions?

Interested but want to find out more? Contact Meredith Church Pipes at churchmm@appstate.edu.

Book Summary

In a profound work that pivots from the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a powerful new framework for understanding our nation’s history and current crisis. Americans have built an empire on the idea of “race,” a falsehood that damages us all but falls most heavily on the bodies of black women and men—bodies exploited through slavery and segregation, and, today, threatened, locked up, and murdered out of all proportion. What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can we all honestly reckon with this fraught history and free ourselves from its burden?

Between the World and Me is Ta-Nehisi Coates’s attempt to answer these questions in a letter to his adolescent son. Coates shares with his son—and readers—the story of his awakening to the truth about his place in the world through a series of revelatory experiences, from Howard University to Civil War battlefields, from the South Side of Chicago to Paris, from his childhood home to the living rooms of mothers whose children’s lives were taken as American plunder. Beautifully woven from personal narrative, reimagined history, and fresh, emotionally charged reportage, Between the World and Me clearly illuminates the past, bracingly confronts our present, and offers a transcendent vision for a way forward.