WMU News

WMU plays host to 'Fahrenheit 451' events

March 5, 2003

KALAMAZOO -- Western Michigan University will serve as host for several events related to Reading Together, a communitywide initiative that aims to get all of Kalamazoo reading and talking about Ray Bradbury's "Fahrenheit 451."

On Wednesday, March 12, the Lee Honors College is sponsoring "Conflagrations in the Mind: Authoritarianism, Censorship and Ideas." The discussion, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 10 a.m. in the Lee Honors College Lounge.

Four WMU panelists are set to discuss book burning in National Socialist Germany, the USA Patriot Act and the question of censorship in today's world. The participants will be Dr. Sam King, an instructor of sociology; Dr. Thomas Kostrzewa, an instructor of political science; Dr. Arnie Johnston, chairperson of the Department of English; and Bettina Meyers, assistant dean of libraries.

A book discussion of "Fahrenheit 451" will also take place on campus from 3 to 4 p.m. Thursday, March 27, in the Meader Rare Book Room on the third floor of Waldo Library. WMU Humanities Librarian David Isaacson will lead the discussion, which is free and open to the public.

Details are still being finalized for several other campus events.

Reading Together is an initiative of the Kalamazoo Public Library in partnership with more than 50 area organizations. Modeled after successful reading programs across North America, the program invites people of all ages and from all walks of life to read a single book and discuss important issues raised by the publication. The community reading period is Feb. 17 to March 16, with book discussions and special events scheduled between March 4 and 25. For more information about the initiative and a complete calendar of events, visit the Reading Together Web site at <www.readingtogether.us>.

Media contact: Jessica English, 269 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu

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