Nashville Great Books Discussion Group

A reader's group devoted to the discussion of meaningful books.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Chinua Achebe: Things Fall Apart

Discussion questions from Book One (June 5, 2006)

1. Who’s better off: Nashvillians or Umuofians?

2. Are Western ideals and values still valid in this part of the world?

3. Is Okonkwe a better father than his father was?

Discussion questions from Books Two, Three, Four (June 12, 2006)

1. Was the arrival of Western civilization a good thing or a bad thing for Umuofia?

2. Why does Okonkwe hang himself?

3. Does Achebe thinks it is better for Africans to hang on to their traditional ways or to modernize their societies?

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Reading Schedule for Summer, 2006


June 5 ... CHINUA ACHEBE - Thing's Fall Apart, Part 1

June 12 ... CHINUA ACHEBE - Thing's Fall Apart, Part 2

June 19 ... NIKOLAI GOGOL - The Overcoat

June 26 ... BHAGAVAD-GITA - (selection)

July 3 ... GREGOR VON REZZORI - Troth

July 10 ... EURIPIDES - The Baccae

July 17 ... O'CONNOR - Everything that Rises Must Converge

July 24 ... WILLIAM B. YEATS - Lapis Lazuli

August 7 ... ROBERT FROST - Design

August 14 ... ELIZABETH BISHOP - The Armadillo

August 21 ... BULGAKOV - The Master and Margarita, Book 1

August 28 ... BULGAKOV - The Master and Margarita, Book 2

The Sacred Scrolls

A Compendium of Nashville Great Books Reading Lists:

Fall, 1990

Bible -Ecclesiastes
Sophocles -Oedipus the King
Freud -On Dreams
Kafka -Metamorphosis
Goethe -Faust, Part One
Kant -First Principles of Morals
Flaubert -A Simple Heart
Hume -Of Personal Identity
Nietzsche -Thus Spoke Zarathustra
Dante -The Inferno
Burke -Reflections on the Revolution in France
Adams -The Education of Henry Adams
Shakespeare -King Lear
Aristotle -On Tragedy
Plato -The Republic


Schopenhauer - The Indestructibility of Our Inner Nature
Euripides - Medea
Weber -The Spirit of Capitalism
Moliere -The Misanthrope
Gibbon -The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
Bible -Job
Mill -Utilitarianism
George Bernard Shaw -Caesar and Cleopatra
St. Augustine -The City of God
Plato -Symposium
Montaigne -Of Experience
Diderot -Rameau's Nephew
Shakespeare -The Tempest
Hamilton, Jay, Madison -The Federalist
Gogol -The Overcoat

Fall, 1988

Dewey -Habits and Will
J.S. Mill -On Liberty
Shakespeare -Hamlet
Bible -The Gospel of Mark
Thucydides -History of the Peloponnesian War
Clausewitz -What is War?
Chekov -Uncle Vanya
Maimonides -On Evil
Homer -The Iliad
Montesquieu -The Principles of Government
Chaucer -The Canterbury Tales
Aeschylus -Agamemnon
William James -The Beast in the Jungle
Machiavelli -The Prince
Tolstoy -The Death of Ivan Ilych

Fall, 1987

Plato -The Crito
Dewey -The Virtues
Euripides -Iphigeneia at Aulis
Aristotle -Politics
Dostoevsky -Notes from the Underground
Bible -Exodus
Hobbes -Origin of Government
Melville -Billy Budd, Sailor
Adam Smith -The Wealth of Nations
Shakespeare -Antony and Cleopatra
Kierkegaard -The Knight of Faith
Herodotus -The Persian Wars
Locke -Of Civil Government
Swift -Gulliver's Travels
Thoreau -On Civil Disobedience

Fall, 1986
Chekhov -Rothchild's Fiddle
Aristotle -On Happiness
Plato -The Apology
Conrad -Heart of Darkness
Kant -Conscience
Marx -Alienated Labor
Bible -Genesis
Freud -Civilization and Its Discontents
Rousseau -The Social Contract
Darwin -The Moral Sense of Man and the Lower Animals
Shakespeare -Othello
Hume -Of Justice and Injustice
Tocqueville -The Power of the Majority
Simmel -Individual Freedom
Sophocles -Antigone