Cheers to Emma Watson!
A young actor who not only gives her time and voice to support women’s equality through her work as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, but also encourages reading & discussion by starting a feminist book group? Give us a minute to give Emma Watson the standing ovation she deserves. Emma recently announced her book group, “Our Shared Shelf,” on Twitter and it already has over 88,000 members. “As part of my work with UN Women, I have started reading as many books and essays about equality as I can get my hands on,” Watson posted on the group’s GoodReads page. “There is so much amazing stuff out there! Funny, inspiring, sad, thought-provoking, empowering! I’ve been discovering so much that, at times, I’ve felt like my head was about to explode… I decided to start a Feminist book club, as I want to share what I’m learning and hear your thoughts too.” The group’s first book is My Life on the Road, by Gloria Steinem. As we learned from Oprah Winfrey’s book club, when a beloved, influential celebrity encourages reading, people read. The Twitter buzz indicates Emma’s efforts will have enormous impact on a new group of readers. Here are a few samples of enthusiastic tweets:
“Tore through @GloriaSteinem‘s book in two days and am already so grateful to @EmWatson for starting #OurSharedShelf.”
“@EmWatson @GloriaSteinem it’s my fav book that I have read this year. She is phenomenal.”
“@EmWatson Thank you for starting this book club…This book is AMAZING!”
Share the news of Emma’s group with your friends, family, and colleagues, and encourage teenage girls and young women in your life to join so they discover both the empowerment of reading women’s writing, and the connection that comes with discussing books.
It was indeed a fascinating discussion with a delightful group. Our Mutual Friend was so much fun to read and so hard to put down that it was a treat to think deliberately about it for those 15 hours. The variety of perspectives among our group on the psychology and motivations of the characters was fascinating. I especially enjoyed Nancy’s questions about tests of character and relationships posed in the plot, who failed the tests, who surpassed them, and why. It was a wonderful week at Toronto Pursuits.
Nancy, this is a great note on Classical Pursuits, which I encourage all to consider attending, as well as on Dickens and the Shared Enquiry (TM) approach more generally. I remember with such fondness our consideration last year of that greatest of all (OK, well almost all) books, Middlemarch. The book, the July in Toronto, your leadership, and reading and discussion in general – all very highly recommended. I look forward to Classical Pursuits next July!!
Thank you, Jess! I’ve learned a great deal from participants at Classical Pursuits over the years, and I look forward to it each summer.