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Go Big Read seeks titles focused on inequality in America for 2015-2016 program

Have you read any great books lately? Do you think something you’ve read would make a great Go Big Read selection? Let us know! For the 2015-2016 academic year, we are seeking books with a focus on inequality in America:

America is often billed as a land of opportunity, but for many people there are barriers to accessing education, getting out of poverty, seeking justice and more.    

“The Go Big Read program will provide a communitywide opportunity to further discuss the ways in which unequal opportunities affect our society and impact our relationships with one another.”  -Rebecca Blank  

If you’ve recently read something that engages with the theme of inequality in America, we want to hear about it. The deadline to submit books for consideration is January 30, 2015, and we are accepting both fiction and non-fiction nominations. You can use this form to nominate titles, and read more about our selection criteria here, and also see if your favorite title is on our running suggestion list.

We can’t wait to hear from you!

Cold Weather Blues? Curl up with a book!

Campus is full of students bundled in mittens and scarves scurrying about as they desperately try to avoid the blustery wind and swirling snowflakes. Winter has officially arrived in Madison Wisconsin, whether we are ready or not. The rest of the week promises chilly temperatures, and by the end you’ll likely be craving a steaming cup of cocoa and the chance to curl up with a warm blanket and a new book. 
If you enjoyed this year’s Go Big Read book, I Am Malala, then you will want to consider choosing one of the books below that cover similar themes, regions, and topics. All of the books are available in campus libraries, you can discover the location by clicking on the linked titles.
An award-winning foreign correspondent who contributed to a Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times series reveals the secret Afghan custom of disguising girls as boys to improve their prospects, discussing its political and social significance as well as the experiences of its practitioners.
Tears of the Desert: A memoir of survival in Darfur by Halim Bashir with Damien Lewis
Born into the Zaghawa tribe in the Sudanese desert, Halima Bashir received a good education away from her rural surroundings and at twenty-four became her village’s first formal doctor. Yet not even Bashir’s degree could protect her from the encroaching conflict that would consume her homeland. Janjaweed Arab militias savagely assaulted the Zaghawa, often with the backing of the Sudanese military. Then, in early 2004, the Janjaweed attacked Bashir’s village and surrounding areas, raping forty-two schoolgirls and their teachers. Bashir, who treated the traumatized victims, some as young as eight years old, could no longer remain quiet. But breaking her silence ignited a horrifying turn of events. 
An extraordinary young woman raised in the refugee camps of Iran and Pakistan, Joya became a teacher in secret girls’ schools, hiding her books under her burqa so the Taliban couldn’t find them; she helped establish a free medical clinic and orphanage in her impoverished home province of Farah; and at a constitutional assembly in Kabul, Afghanistan, in 2003, she stood up and denounced her country’s powerful NATO-backed warlords. She was twenty-five years old. Two years later, she became the youngest person elected to Afghanistan’s new Parliament. In 2007, she was suspended from Parliament for her persistent criticism of the warlords and drug barons and their cronies. She has survived four assassination attempts to date, is accompanied at all times by armed guards, and sleeps only in safe houses.

In the name of honor: a memoir by Mukhtar Mai with Marie-Therese Cuny; translated by Lind Coverdale; foreword by Nicholas D. Kristof

Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani woman, was gang raped as a punishment for indiscretions allegedly committed by the women’s brother. However, Mai fought back and changed the feminist movement in Pakistan, one of the world’s most adverse climates for women. Mai was awarded money from the government and she used it to open a school for girls so that future generations would not suffer, as she had, from illiteracy. 

Go Big Read seeks titles focused on service for 2014-15 program

Have you read any great books lately? Think something you’ve read would make a great Go Big Read selection? Let us know! For the 2014-2015 academic year, we are seeking books with a focus on service:

Here at home and around the world, people are called to serve their
countries, their communities and other missions. Some volunteer, some
are drafted, and others find themselves pressed into service by their
circumstances.

But what does it mean to serve? Who is compelled to serve and why?
And in what ways does it affect those who serve and the people around
them?

If you’ve recently read something that engages with the theme of service, we want to hear about it. The deadline to submit books for consideration is February 1, 2014, and we are accepting both fiction and non-fiction nominations. You can use this form to nominate titles, and read more about our selection criteria here, and also see if your favorite title is on our running suggestion list.

We can’t wait to hear from you!

Suggest a Go Big Read book for 2013-14!

Have you read any great books lately?

“Global connections” is the Go Big Read focus for the 2013-2014 academic year, and we’re taking suggestions starting now! (Fiction suggestions are highly encouraged.) To read more about the 2013-14 theme, check out this article.

The deadline to make your suggestion is February 1st, and you can use the form here. If you want to check and see if your favorite book has been nominated, take a look at the running suggestion list.

If you have any questions, shoot us an email: gobigread @ library. wisc. edu.

We can’t wait to see your suggestions!

Don’t Forget to Suggest Books for Next Year by January 6th!!

Planning is already underway for next year’s Go Big Read, and nominations are now being accepted for the book selection. All genres may be nominated, from fiction and nonfiction to biography, science and science fiction.

Nominated books should do one or more of the following:

– promote enjoyment of reading by being readable, relevant and engaging;
– incorporate sufficient depth and scope to promote sustained discussion of different points of view;
– appeal to individuals from a variety of backgrounds; and
– have cross-disciplinary flexibility that can tie into a variety of campus activities and programming.

The nomination deadline is midnight on Thursday, Jan. 6. The review committee will sift and winnow through all the submissions to create a short list of book titles for the chancellor to consider.

To suggest a title and see the list so far, visit http://www.gobigread.wisc.edu

Sarah McDaniel
Go Big Read