The Thomas Jefferson Center for the Study of Core Texts and Ideas

Jefferson Book Club

The Jefferson Book Club, open to all interested University of Texas undergraduates, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and faculty, is a forum for informal discussions of the great books. Copies of the readings for each meeting will be made available about a week beforehand.

For more information, to offer additional suggestions, or to join the book club, please contact book club faculty advisor Erik Dempsey. New members are welcome to join at any time.

Fall 2017 Events

Thursday, August 31: Movie Night: Gattaca (in Batts 5.108)
Thursday, 9/14: Bloom, Closing of the American Mind, excerpts
Thursday, Sept 28:  Jorge Luis Borges. “Library of Babel”
Thursday, Oct 12: Heraclitus, Fragments
Thursday, Oct 26: Nietzsche, Philosophy in the Tragic Age of the Greeks—first half
Monday, Nov 6: Nietzsche, Philosophy in the Tragic Age of the Greeks—second half
Thursday, Nov 16: Kierkegaard—Fear and Trembling, excerpts
Thursday, Nov 30: Virginia Woolf—“The Duchess and the Jeweler”

For further details on these events, please see http://www.utexas.edu/cola/coretexts/events/index.php

Past Events

1001 Nights, (Selections)
Al-Ghazali, The Incoherence of the Philosophers (excerpts)
Aristotle on Friendship
Aristotle, Physics
The Arthashastra: Law, Governance, and Society in Ancient India
Augustine, City of God (excerpt)
Jane Austen, Persuasion
Jane Austin, Sense and Sensibility
Francis Bacon, Great Instauration
Essays of Francis Bacon
Giovanni Boccaccio, The Decameron (excerpt)
Boethius, The Consolation of Philosophy (excerpt)
Albert Camus, "The Retreat of Helen"
Cervantes, Don Quixote
Essays of Winston Churchill
Living Ethically, selections from Confucius
Dante, Purgatorio (excerpt)
Dostoyevski, The Brothers Karamazov (The Grand Inquisitor and other selections)
Essays and Letters of Albert Einstein
Euclid, Elements (Selections)
Franklin's Autobiography, parts 1 and 2
Edward Gibbon, History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
Heraclitus, Fragments
Heisenberg, Physics and Philosophy
Thomas Jefferson (Selections)
The Sermon on the Mount
Kafka, Before the Law
Søren Kierkegaard, Sickness Unto Death (excerpt)
Thomas Kuhn, Structure of Scientific Revolutions
Abraham Lincoln (Selections)
Niccolo Machiavelli, Discourses (excerpt)
Herman Melville, "The Lightning-Rod Man"
John Milton, Paradise Lost (excerpts)
Essai (selections), Michel de Montaigne
What is happiness? (Selections from the Stoics and Montaigne)
Nietzsche, Birth of Tragedy
Nietzsche, "The Problem of Socrates"
Plato, Phaedo (excerpt)
Marcel Proust, Remembrance of Things Past (selections)
Ayn Rand, Anthem
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Letter to D'Alembert
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, "The Levite of Ephraim"
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, "Preface to Narcisse"
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Reveries
William Shakespeare, Midsummer Night's Dream, American Shakespeare Center performance followed by discussion
William Shakespeare, Coriolanus
William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure
William Shakespeare, Tempest (following Actors from the London Stage performances)
Adam Smith, Theory of Moral Sentiments, selections
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn The Gulag Archipelago (excerpts)
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, A World Split Apart
John Steinbeck, East of Eden (excerpt)
Leo Strauss, "What is Liberal Education?"
Jonathan Swift, "Battle of the Books"
Ibn Tufayl, Hayy Ibn Yacqzan
Mark Twain, "The Diaries of Adam and Eve"
Voltaire, Candide
Kurt Vonnegut, Harrison Bergeron
David Foster Wallace, Everything and More
Xenophon, Apology

Movie Night: All the King's Men
Movie Night: Blade Runner
Movie Night: Casablanca
Movie Night, Chariots of Fire
Movie Night: Crimes and Misdemeanors
Movie Night: Bernardo Bertolucci's Il Conformista
Movie Night: Metropolitan
Movie Night: Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Movie Night: O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Movie Night: Pleasantville
Movie Night: Spartacus
Movie Night: The Counterfeit Traitor
Movie Night: The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
Movie Night: The Seventh Seal
Movie Night: Tristan and Isolde