It’s spring! With a change in the season, now is a great time for new ideas, perspectives and approaches. Check out these five books chosen by librarian Allyson Mower on the theme of common humanity, intervening, free-thinking and speaking up for others and yourself.
“The Persuaders” by Anand Giridharadas
This book offers excellent storytelling and ethnographic research on how people build communities, start movements and work with others. It offers compelling perspectives on determining how and when to call people in.
“Fierce Self-Compassion” by Kristin Neff
When it comes to being educators and academics, it can feel like you always need to say “yes,” but this book offers a research-based perspective on reasons to not always say “yes” as a form of self-compassion and a central element of our common humanity. According to Dr. Kristin Neff’s research, those with a strong sense of common humanity along with an understanding of self-compassion have lower rates of anxiety and depression, higher emotional intelligence and greater overall life satisfaction.
“The Crime of Complicity” by Amos Guiora
"If you are a bystander and witness a crime, should intervention to prevent that crime be a legal obligation? Or is moral responsibility enough? Amos N. Guiora addresses these profoundly important questions and the bystander-victim relationship from a deeply personal and legal perspective, focusing on the Holocaust and then exploring cases in contemporary society."
“The Sum of Us” by Heather McGee
Heather McGee spoke on campus last semester as part of the Tanner Humanities series. If you missed the event, now’s your chance to engage with her impactful work on sources of inequality and ways to bring us all up on equal footing at the May 10 Professional Education-Marriott Library Book club discussion.
“Speak Freely” by Kevin Whittington
Whittington discusses the importance of members of a campus community making choices as a form of intellectual commitment to sustain an environment for free inquiry and learning. To create the right kind of learning and scholarly environment is no easy task. I plan on pursuing further Whittington’s list of reads that deal with the “tension” (Whittington’s term) between inclusiveness and free speech.