Common Reading Nominees Due

Recommend books for UM community selection through Dec. 4

OXFORD, Miss. – Incoming University of Mississippi students in 2023 may be different in every way – intended major, school, beliefs, hobbies, hairstyles – but they will have one thing in common: they’ll all be reading the same book.

Each year since 2011, students, staff and faculty recommend the university’s next Common Reading Experience, the book that incoming freshmen and transfer students read, which will be integrated into classroom discussions and which professor Stephen Monroe said will help unify the campus.

“The Common Reading Experience is one of our unifying academic traditions, a threshold crossed by all first-year students at our university,” said Monroe, chair of writing and rhetoric and co-chair of the Common Reading Experience Steering Committee. “When we read together, we create community. Please help us find a great book for next year.”

Natasha Jeter, assistant vice chancellor for wellness and student services, and Jason Ritchie, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry, are co-chairs of the committee, which will take recommendations through Dec. 12. The committee will meet through January 2023, with the goal of choosing next fall’s book early in the new year.

The author of the Common Reading Experience book is invited to speak at Fall Convocation for incoming students. John Green, author of this year’s selection, “The Anthropocene Reviewed,” spoke at Ole Miss in August about moving humankind forward.

Recommended books should be written by a living author in the last five years, accessible in paperback to readers of all reading levels, and written by an author who is available to visit campus and interact with students in fall 2023. Committee members also ask that the book be fewer than 400 pages.

The university’s reading list in the past has included: “World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments” by UM professor Aimee Nezhukumatathil, “What the Eyes Don’t See” by Mona Hanna-Attisha, “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City” by Matthew Desmond, “The Girls of Atomic City” by Denise Kiernan and “The Education of a Lifetime,” a memoir by Chancellor Emeritus Robert Khayat.

Recommend books for next year’s experience here.