Campus Reading Group Cultivates Literary Tastes

Read any good books lately? The members of the Women’s Reading Group certainly have—and they would like you to join them. The group, made up of staff, faculty and, occasionally, students, gets together about once a month in the Cave to discuss the latest book they’ve all just read. And don’t let the name fool you; everyone is welcome. “It’s called the Women’s Reading Group because that’s what it was when it started, but we’re open to the entire campus community,” explains Laura Lockwood, director of the campus women’s center. “We’d love to have some men join us.”

Lockwood started the group in 1999 because, she says, “I love to read and I really enjoy talking with other people who have shared the same experience. It’s a great way to bring people together from different parts of campus.” The group’s format is informal by design, with members suggesting future books each month. Sometimes they look for outside recommendations or consult the New York Times Book Review. However they find them, the group reads a wide variety of works of both fiction and non fiction, including some by Trinity authors. In addition to bestsellers like Amy Tan’s The Bone Setter’s Daughter and Michael Cunningham’s The Hours, the group has read Professor of Philosophy Dan Lloyd’s Radiant Cool and Writer-in-Residence Lucy Ferriss’ Leaving the Neighborhood. Group members have read and discussed more than 40 books since 1999.

“We used to pick a few months’ worth of books at the beginning of each semester, but now we go month to month,” says Associate Director of Annual Giving Abbie O’Brien, a member of the reading group for about two years. “This way we can read something current if we want to.” O’Brien agrees with Lockwood about the importance of the social aspect of the group. “I’ve gotten to know people from all around Trinity through the reading group—people I might not have met otherwise. And it has definitely expanded my reading material; we’ve read some books that I probably wouldn’t have picked up if it weren’t for the group. Sometimes people come who have read a book outside the group, like The Da Vinci Code, and they want to talk about it.”

Anyone interested in joining the group is encouraged to contact Lockwood at extension 2408 or by e-mail at You can also look for meeting announcements on Trinity Exchange.


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