This reading group hopes to pull together a diverse mix of people - students, community members, and staff - to explore how humanities texts from popular culture inspire readers to grapple with urgent social, ethical, and cultural issues of the day. Our hope is that the participants create a robust dialogue and become ethical and engaged citizens who use literature and theatre as catalysts for social action.
Our goal is to raise $2,500 by September 15 to support this year's program. The ongoing program will provide 20 students, community members and staff with the books for the series as well as a Humanities and Ethics Center tote bag and bookmark for free. It will also support the events by providing light food and other necessities for the regular gatherings. The group will meet throughout the 2014-2015 academic year with faculty guides as discussion leaders. By raising the money in our project goal, we would be able to purchase all of the books, and a personalized tote bag and bookmark, for 20 interested Drury students and community members.
For the 2014-2105 academic year, the theme of the Humanities and Ethics Center is “Humanities Goes Pop!” as we use texts from popular culture to illustrate timeless and universal humanities themes. In this project, we propose a book discussion group that will include both Drury students, staff and members of the Springfield community to engage in an enriching conversation that bridges the university and the larger Springfield region. The sessions will be open to the public and focus on four texts:
• Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead imagines what life is like for Charles Schultz’s Peanuts characters once they become adults and confront contemporary problems.
• Pride and Prejudice and Zombies blends 19th century England and the contemporary fascination with zombies and asks what it means to be human, especially during a period of rigid class roles.
• Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind details how a princess fights to create tolerance, understanding and patience among empires fighting over the world’s natural resources.
• Love is a Mixtape is a memoir that uses the author and his deceased wife’s shared passion for music as an exploration of love and loss.
Who are we?
Drury University formed the Humanities and Ethics Center in 2012 to promote the humanities and to demonstrate the importance of humanities knowledge to contemporary life. After all, don’t we live richer and more meaningful lives if we explore the nature of the good life with our fellow citizens? And don’t we do that when we strive to think together about the very deepest human questions that make our lives difficult, thrilling, meaningful, and significant? Examining and developing answers to humanities questions enables us live up to our human potential as both individuals and community members, which allows us to flourish as engaged citizens, working for the public good.
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I want to once again thank you for your gift to the 2014 Drury Humanities book series. As you probably know, our project did not meet its goal. We are disappointed but undeterred in our mission of finishing this project. Many of you chose the “give anyway” option in the Cause Momentum system, which means that your pledge came to us despite the fact that we did not meet our goal. We thank you for that gift! If you did not choose the “give anyway” option, we completely understand and also thank you for your interest and pledge. That sum was returned to your Cause Momentum account as a credit, for you to use on a future project (because you have already received a tax receipt for the gift, the Community Foundation cannot return it to you as a refund).
However, if you would like to make sure your money still goes toward our project, you can still donate it directly to the Drury Humanities program. Here’s how:
First, make sure you logged in to the Cause Momentum website and click “Profile.” In the upper right hand corner of the profile page, you’ll see your available balance. That’s how much you have to give.
Second, go to https://www.causemomentum.org/agency/drury. On the right hand side of the page header, there will be a button that says “Donate Directly.” Click that button.
Third, during the checkout process, you will see a box or button that says “Use available balance” or something similar. This will allow you to make a donation from your existing credit. You will not receive a second tax receipt, as your original pledge has already been fully accounted for for tax purposes.
Of course you can keep your balance to support a future Cause Momentum project; we just wanted you to know this option was available, in case you decided you still wanted to support our goal, or if you perhaps chose not to “give anyway” by error.
If you have any questions or problems with this process, please contact Andrea Battaglia, Drury University's Director of Annual Giving & Alumni Relations at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Matt Lemmon with the Community Foundation of the Ozarks at email@example.com.
Thank you again!