Meets monthly.  Various literary genres are read and discussed–short stories, novels, poetry, essays.  Sometimes Great Books shows film adaptations in conjunction with Cinema Studies. Most, but not all, selections are from anthologies published by the Great Books Foundation, including Imperfect Ideal: Utopian and Dystopian Visions, Great Conversations 6, Great Conversations 5 and The Seven Deadly Sins Sampler; and The World’s Greatest Short Stories published by Dover Thrift Editions.

Great Books currently meets via Zoom only.

Upcoming Events

Past Books


John Cheever’s short stories:  “Goodbye, My Brother,” “The Enormous
Radio,” and “The Swimmer.”

W. E. B. DuBois’s The Souls of Black Folk

Virginia Woolf’s short stories:  “The New Dress,” “Moments of Being,” “The Man Who Loved His Kind,” “The Searchlight,” and “The Legacy.”


Stories of Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Mark Twain’s Pudd’nhead Wilson

Hospital Sketches by Louisa May Alcott

The Death of Ivan Ilych by Leo Tolstoy

Short stories by Katherine Mansfield

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave

Rebecca West’s The Return of the Soldier

George Orwell’s Animal Farm

Albert Camus’s The Fall

Henry James’s The Turn of the Screw


Pearl S. Buck’s The Good Earth

Nella Larsen’s novel, Passing

Selections from Joan Didion’s The White Album

Nikolai Gogol’s Old-Fashioned Farmers, The Tale of How Ivan Ivanovich Quarreled with Ivan Nikiforovich, and The Nose

The Third Man, by Graham Greene

Short stories by Charlotte Perkins Gilman


Philip Roth’s Everyman

Virginia Woolf’s Flush

Rudolf Besier’s play The Barretts of Wimpole Street                

Edna O’Brien’s “Black Flower,” “Send My Roots Rain,” and “Old Wounds.”

Ernest Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast

Flannery O’Conner’s short story Everything That Rises Must Converge

James Baldwin’s essay Notes of a Native Son

Katherine Mansfield’s, “The Garden-Party” and “At the Bay.”

The Adulterous Woman“, “The Silent Men“, and “The Guest“, by Albert Camus

Maria Luisa Bombal’s “The Tree,” Jorge Luis Borges’s “Emma Zunz,” and Calvert Casey’s “The Walk.

George Orwell from his Collected Essays: ‘Why I Write,’ ‘Shooting an Elephant,’ ‘Marrakech,’ ‘Looking Back on the Spanish War,’ and ‘Reflections on Gandhi.’

Homeira Qaderi’s Dancing in the Mosque: An Afghan Mother’s Letter to Her Son

The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Truman Capote’s A Christmas Memory


Favorite Poems

The Beast in the Jungle by Henry James

Due to the pandemic the discussions below were conducted via Zoom

The Plague by Albert Camus

Great Short Stories by American Women – Part 1

Great Short Stories by American Women – Part 2

Hiroshima by John Hersey

A Sand County Almanac by Aldo Leopold

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder

The Angel at the Grave by Edith Wharton

A Jury of Her Peers by Susan Glaspell

Paul’s Case by Willa Cather

Paul Lim screened the following videos via his personal Zoom account

Ray Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451” (1966 version, with Oskar Werner and Julie Christie)

Thornton Wilder’s “The Bridge of San Luis Rey” (2004 version, with Gabriel Byrne, Robert De Niro, etc.)

Susan Glasspell’s “Trifles: A Jury of Her Peers”

Willa Cather’s “Paul’s Case” (with Eric Roberts.)


  • Raymond Chandler’s Farewell, My Lovely
  • Yevgeny Zamyatin’s We and E. M. Forster’s The Machine Stops
  • Jennifer Egan’s The Black Box and George Saunder’s Jon
  • Thomas Mann’s Death in Venice
  • William Faulkner’s A Bear Hunt and Alice Munro’s The Bear Came Over the Mountain
  • James Joyce’s The Dead
  • Gustave Flaubert’s A Simple Heart and The Legend of St. Julian Hospitator
  • Franz Kafka’s The Trial
  • Joseph Conrad’s Typhoon
  • Herman Melville’s Billy Budd
  • Henry David Thoreau’s Civil Disobedience
  • Washington Irving’s Rip van Winkle and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow


  • D.H. Lawrence, The Rocking Horse Winner, and Elizabeth Bowen,The Inherited Clock
  • Raymond Carver, Fat, and Xu Xi, Famine
  • Perri Klass, Not a Good Girl, and Nathan Englander, For the Relief of Unbearable Urges
  • Sir Thomas More, Utopia, and Ursula K. Le Guin, The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas
  • Wislawa Szymborska, Utopia, and Homer, The Shield of Achilles from The Iliad
  • Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, The Leopard
  • Rebecca Solnit, A Paradise Built in Hell, and Riichi Yokomitsu, Time
  • Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, and Michel de Montaigne, On the Cannibals
  • Aristotle, Selections from Politics, and Robert Nozick, A Framework for Utopia
  • Augustine, Selections from The City of God, and Theodor Herzl, The Jewish State
  • Members share and discuss favorite poems
  • L. Frank Baum, A Kidnapped Santa Claus
  • E. T. A. Hoffman, The Nutcracker and The Mouse King
  • Willa Cather, The Burglar’s Christmas
  • Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle


  • Virginia Woolf, The Mark on the Wall, and D.H. Lawrence, The Prussian Office
  • James Joyce, Araby; Luigi Pirandello, Mrs. Frola and Mr. Ponza, Her Son-in-Law; Franz Kafka, The Hunger Artist
  • Chinua Achebe, The Sacrificial Egg, and John Updike, A&P
  • Ron Chernow, Alexander Hamilton, and The Federalist Papers, Nos. 1, 10 and 30
  • William Faulkner, A Rose for Emily, and Flannery O’Connor, Good Country People
  • Edith Wharton, Roman Fever, and Tobias Wolff, Smokers
  • Rudyard Kipling, Mary Postgate, and Margaret Atwood, Hairball
  • Henry James, The Turn of the Screw
  • Anton Chekov, The House with the Mezzanine, and Bobbie Ann Mason, Shiloh
  • Isak Dinesen, Babette’s Feast


  • Karel Capek, R.U.R. (Rossum’s Universal Robots)
  • Edith Wharton, The Age of Innocence
  • Katherine Mansfield, The Daughters of the Late Colonel
  • Nathaniel Hawthorne, Rappaccini’s Daughter
  • George Eliot, The Lifted Veil
  • John Locke, A Letter Concerning Toleration
  • Mark Twain, The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg
  • Mary McCarthy, My Confession
  • Herman Melville, Bartleby the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street, and Guy de Maupassant, The Necklace
  • Leo Tolstoy, The Death of Ivan Ilyich
  • Rudyard Kipling, The Man Who Would Be King, and Catherine Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper
  • Ernest Hemingway, A Clean Well-Lighted Place, and Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis, The Fortune Teller


  • Ryunosuke Akutagawa, Hell Screen
  • Richard Wright, Bright and Morning Star
  • Jean-Paul Sartre, What Is Literature?
  • Iris Murdoch, The Bell
  • Jean-Paul Sartre, No Exit
  • Doris Lessing, To Room Nineteen
  • George Santayana, Soliloquies from England
  • Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man
  • H.G. Wells, The Man Who Could Work Miracles
  • Jane Addams, The Devil-Baby at Hull House
  • Thomas Mann, Mario and the Magician


  • Ruth Benedict, Anthropology and the Abnormal
  • D.H. Lawrence, The Man Who Loved Islands
  • John Keats, Selected Poems
  • Euripides, Hekabe
  • George Santayana, Philosophy and Knowledge
  • John Stuart Mill, The Criterion of a Good Form of Government
  • Eudora Welty, A Still Moment
  • Reinhold Niebuhr, The Children of Light and the Children of Darkness
  • Herman Hesse, Siddhartha
  • Nathaniel Hawthorne, Ethan Brand