@theTable: “FSR Summer Book Club”
Summer is here! For many of us, summer can be a season of exploration: whether we are taking a vacation, thinking about a new project, imagining new courses, or trying something new at a Farmer’s Market. The first weeks of summer are also when some of us get excited about making new lists: projects to do; ice cream flavors to enjoy; TV shows to binge; recipes we want to try. For the authors in this series, summer is when we have even more time to read for pleasure and to knock off some of the books on our feminist to-be-read (TBR) lists.
Why should you read some feminist fiction this summer? Well, for the authors in this @thetable blog series, there is pleasure in curling up with a good book. We read these books because we get a thrill when we are immersed in the pages of a different world, especially when an author helps us to see such worlds through a feminist lens. The escape we find through reading fiction has additional positive benefits, such as fostering empathy and enhancing our critical thinking skills. Our pleasure reading does not have to connect to our scholarship, but the authors of this blog are also scholars whose areas of research coalesce with the topics addressed by these books.
Each of the books covered in this blog series was written by a female writer. An important theme within each of these books is religion; the book choices include discussions of Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Additionally, each of the suggested books engages in feminist or womanist ideas, either overtly or subtly. Hence, we hope this blog series forms a summer reading list for feminists interested in the study of religion.
Holly Hillgardner, of Bethany College, writes the opening blog for this series which introduces us to the stunning novel, Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi. On Tuesday, we look forward to hearing from Rev. Mia McClain of Myers Park Baptist Church in Charlotte, NC who will suggest that you read a classic play this summer through her thoughtful analysis of Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun. On Wednesday, Christy Cobb of Wingate University will discuss the interesting and slightly controversial recent novel by Sue Monk Kidd, The Book of Longings. Thursday’s blog by Yasmine Singh of NC State University will discuss the intersectionality present in Megha Majumdar’s A Burning. We close the week with Jimmy Hoke of Luther College who suggests we think with zombies through his analysis of Justina Ireland’s Deathless Divide.
We encourage you to choose one (or more!) of these books to read for yourself this summer. If you read along with us, let us know what you think of the book by using the hashtags #FSRreads and #FeministFiction. FSR also invites readers to blog about a book that they want to discuss or suggest others read on the topic of religion and feminism. If you have read a book that you would like to write about, consider submitting a blog so that we can extend the conversation about books further into the summer! Additionally, if you have read one of the books featured in this series, we invite you to reflect and respond to the conversation generated by the authors in this virtual roundtable.
Submissions Guidelines: https://www.fsrinc.org/blog-submissions/.
Contact: [email protected]
Our FSR Summer Book Club @theTable authors (in order of publication):
Monday: Holly Hillgardner, A Stunning and Rewarding Transcendent Kingdom
Wednesday: Christy Cobb, Feminist Hermeneutical Imagination in the Book of Longings
Thursday: Yasmine Singh, Intersectionality in Majumdar’s A Burning: Class, Gender, and Religion
Friday: Jimmy Hoke, Zombie Feminisms: Justina Ireland’s Deathless Divide
Check out previous FSR Blog @theTables!