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University of Wisconsin–Madison

Month: September 2013

A Tale for the Time Being is now available as an eBook!

Are you a Kindle person, a Nook person, or an iPad person? Penguin Books, publisher of A Tale for the Time Being, announced on September 25th that their eBook catalog is now available via OverDrive for free download to portable e-readers including Nooks, Kindles and iPads. The Wisconsin Public Library Consortium, which includes Madison Public Library and all South Central Library System public libraries, has added 25 copies of this year’s Go Big Read book to the WPLC digital library.

This eBook is available to read with the OverDrive Read browser reader, as well as most devices and Kindle. (Of note to Kindle users:  Penguin ebook titles are available for Kindle users via the USB sideloading only.)  Public library users may already be familiar with this process. If not, this OverDrive Help article covers it, or users can call their local library for help.

If you are not familiar with Overdrive, start here!

Go Big Read book discussions

Have you already finished A Tale for the Time Being? Are you disappointed that there’s more than a month to go until our author event on October 28? Have no fear!

Madison Public Library is partnering with Go Big Read to host book discussions throughout the community. All discussions are free and open to the public, with no pre-registration required; all you have to do is show up (and probably read the book first)! No matter where you live in Madison, odds are a library near you has a discussion coming up sometime soon.

This month alone, you could head south along Park Street to check out the discussion at Goodman Branch this Saturday. Or take the opportunity to hang out in the gorgeous new Central Library (side note, who’s going to Stacked! tonight?) on September 25 by participating in their evening discussion. And Meadowridge Branch is holding a discussion next Saturday.

October and November are chock full of MPL/GBR book discussions, too, as well as other events (Kanji-writing workshop, anyone?). If you want to check out your library’s discussion group or find one that fits in your schedule, visit our Events page.

Emotional Intelligence: Why discuss sensitive topics in an academic setting?

University Health Services

“All
learning has an emotional base.” – Plato

As
our campus community comes together to read Ruth Ozeki’s novel A Tale for
the Time Being
, readers may be taken aback by the themes of suicide,
trauma, and mental illness. Sensitive topics, such as suicide, can evoke a wide
range of emotions. These themes also bring up the questions, “What is the value
of discussing such sensitive topics in an academic setting?” and “How can they
happen in emotionally safe and meaningful ways?”

Emotional
intelligence refers to one’s ability to perceive, control, and evaluate
emotions. Building this intelligence is a crucial step in individual development.
Our feelings and emotions ultimately guide our thinking and actions, whether we
are aware of it or not. And, to get back to the question at hand, a key step in
developing emotional intelligence involves using emotions to promote thinking
and cognitive activity.

At
UW-Madison, we pride ourselves on providing a liberal arts education to our
students. The Wisconsin Idea promotes educational experiences both in and out
of the classroom. We hope that students leave our university with an
understanding of how their coursework is relevant to their lives and
communities. Emotional intelligence is an often undervalued aspect of a college
education that prepares people to navigate relationships and contribute to the
world around them.

Having
an open dialogue in an academic setting communicates to students that these
issues are important to both emotional and intellectual development. Talking
about mental illness helps reduce stigma and makes it clear that UW-Madison
respects the very real and diverse experiences students bring to the classroom.

If
conversations about trauma or suicide are happening in academic settings,
students need to know that instructors value their feelings and wellbeing. Instructors
can do this by providing a trigger warning before reading sensitive material.
Without a warning, students may feel bombarded with difficult memories or
emotions, especially if they have personally had traumatic experiences. Their
sole focus will be dealing with their own reaction to the material, which may
interfere with their ability to engage academically. Instructors can also help
create a safe space in the classroom by establishing
ground rules for discussion and stressing the importance of using respectful language
and listening practices.
Finally,
when discussing sensitive topics, instructors should know what resources exist
for any student who might feel triggered by the material. University Health
Services is available 24-hours a day if students need support processing their
emotions or have other mental health concerns. University faculty and staff can
also contact UHS at (608)265-5600, option 9 for after-hours mental health
crisis services.

For
a full list of mental health and suicide prevention resources, visit http://www.gobigread.wisc.edu/resources/HealthResources2013.pdf.

Valerie
Kowis
Suicide
Prevention Coordinator
University
Health Services

Guest Book Review: Thoughts from Louise Robbins

Guest Review:


I have just finished reading the BIG READ book: Ozeki’s A
Tale for the Time Being
Me: “I’m finished. I’m sad.”  
Patrick Robbins: “Did it have a sad
ending?” 
Me: “No. I’m sad there is no more to read.”

It’s a wonderful book with too many discussable themes to count.
Off the top of my head: the environment; technology and its uses; zen Buddhism;
war; bullying; the aesthetics and ethics of suicide; being and time; history
and memory; mutual construction of the writer and the reader. And none of these
weighty themes are pounded or expounded to oblivion. The characters—and the
settings—grabbed me and kept me spellbound. I found myself torn between jotting
notes in the margin and rushing headlong to the next page. The next page won.
I’m going to read it again.
A Tale for the Time Being joins two other books of the
last ten years on my list of favorites: The Poisonwood Bible and The
Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
.
I’m hoping to participate in some of the discussions. And you may find me sitting zazen.
Professor Emerita,
School of Library and Information Studies
*If you’d like to submit a review, please contact us! 

5,500+ Books in Under a Minute

More than 5,500 copies of  A Tale for the Time Being flew out the doors of the Kohl Center after Convocation.  Checkout this cool 60 seconds time lapse video of all those books leaving.

Also, keep an eye out for a special glimpse of Bucky.  Many lucky students received their book directly from him!



Note: Change the video quality to 1080p HD if this is fuzzy for you. 

*A special thank you to Dave Luke for producing this video.