Book Club Meetings

Bailey Cove Classics: Ramayana

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, July 3, 2006 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

Drawing his inspiration from the work of an eleventh century Tamil poet called Kamban, Narayan has used the talents of a master novelist to recreate the excitement and joy he has found in the classic Indian epic.

Bailey Cove Classics: Inferno

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, June 5, 2006 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

The first of the 3 canticles in La divina commedia (The Divine Comedy), this 14th-century allegorical poem begins Dante's imaginary journey from Hell to Purgatory to Paradise with his sojourn among the damned. There he encounters historical and mythological creatures -- each symbolic of a particular vice or crime.

Bailey Cove Classics: Iliad

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Tuesday, August 16, 2005 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

So great is the impact of ancient Greek literature on Western culture that even people who have never read Homer's Iliad or The Odyssey know a lot about them. The Trojan Horse, Achilles' heel, the Sirens' call, Scylla and Charybdis--all have entered popular mythology, becoming metaphors for the less heroic situations we face in our own lives.

Bailey Cove Classics: Hedda Gabler

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Tuesday, April 18, 2006 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

Universally condemned in 1890 when it was written, Hedda Gabler has since become one of Ibsen's most frequently performed plays. Its title role is elusive and complex: Hedda is an intelligent and ambitious woman, who has no means of finding personal fulfillment in the stifling world of late nineteenth-century bourgeois society. Too frightened of scandal to become involved with a brilliant, wayward writer, she opts for a conventional but loveless marriage in the hope of finding surrogate satisfaction through her husband's career.

Bailey Cove Classics: Lysistrata

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, August 1, 2005 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

Led by the eponymous Lysistrata, the story's female characters barricade the public funds building and withhold sex from their husbands to end the Peloponnesian War and secure peace. In doing so, Lysistrata engages the support of women from Sparta, Boeotia, and Corinth. All of them, at first aghast at the suggestion of withholding sex, finally agree swearing an oath of allegiance to the cause.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Great Gatsby

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, April 3, 2006 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

A portrait of the Jazz Age in all of its decadence and excess, Gatsby captured the spirit of the author's generation and earned itself a permanent place in American mythology. Self-made, self-invented millionaire Jay Gatsby embodies some of Fitzgerald's--and his country's--most abiding obsessions: money, ambition, greed, and the promise of new beginnings.

Bailey Cove Classics: the works of T.S. Eliot

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, May 1, 2006 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

Eliot was one of the most daring innovators of twentieth-century poetry. Never compromising either with the public or indeed with language itself, he has followed his belief that poetry should aim at a representation of the complexities of modern civilization in language and that such representation necessarily leads to difficult poetry. Despite this difficulty his influence on modern poetic diction has been immense. Discussion included "Waste Land," "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," and "Portrait of a Lady."

Bailey Cove Classics: La Vita Nuova

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, May 7, 2007 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

This celebration of the poet's passionate love for his immortal Beatrice weaves together rapturous sonnets and canzoni with prose commentaries and an autobiographical narrative. A predecessor to The Divine Comedy, La Vita Nuova (The New Life) also serves as an ever-relevant treatise on the art and technique of poetry.

Bailey Cove Classics: Les misérables

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Tuesday, March 14, 2006 - 3:00pm - 4:00pm

The story of how the convict Jean-Valjean struggled to escape his past and reaffirm his humanity, in a world brutalized by poverty and ignorance, became the gospel of the poor and the oppressed.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Love Songs of Sappho

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, October 1, 2007 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

Called the "Tenth Muse" by the ancients, Greece's greatest female lyric poet Sappho (ca. 610-580 B.C.E.) spent the majority of her life on the famed island of Lesbos. Passionate and breathtaking, her poems survive only in fragments, following religious conspiracies to silence her. This excellent translation includes Roche's brilliant essay, "Portrait of Sappho".

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