Sharjah: Following the acclaimed debut early this year, the House of Wisdom (HoW) is launching the second edition of its quarterly Book Club series from September to November, during which three influential and widespread titles will be discussed to raise awareness of the environmental sustainability issues. The new edition will provide a platform for discussion and interaction on the impact of the environmental changes on our lives, and what actions we should take to maintain a clean and sustainable environment.
Each month, the HoW Book Club has selected a “Book of the Month,” which is readily available to the public at HoW. Members are encouraged to embark on a literary odyssey, delving into the chosen book with enthusiasm and curiosity. At the end of the month, the Book Club meets to discuss the selected pieces, transforming the month’s reading into a communal and immersive experience.
The Book Club meetings feature dynamic workshops that push the boundaries of literary exploration. Beyond exchanging ideas, participants are invited to embark on a creative journey through the world of non-fiction, refining their writing prowess along the way. These workshops, led by accomplished Dr. Nezar Andary, an Associate Professor, filmmaker, and cultural programmer, are designed to enhance participants' writing skills while igniting their imaginative storytelling abilities. HoW invites interested community members to register via the following link https://linktr.ee/houseofwisdom.
For September, the House of Wisdom Book Club delves into Rachel Carson's ‘Silent Spring,’ a ground-breaking work that has served as a catalyst for raising ecological awareness. The author warns about the catastrophic consequences of widespread pesticide use, particularly DDT, on ecosystems, wildlife, and human health. The book's findings raised public awareness of the significant risks that pollution poses to environmental sustainability. It remains a cornerstone of the modern environmental movement, calling for responsible coexistence between humanity and nature.
Identity vs. Nature
Throughout October, the Book Club will highlight Ursula K. Le Guin's ‘A Wizard of Earthsea,’ a fantasy masterpiece that transcends generations. Le Guin's enchanting narrative invites readers to embark on a journey through the mythical archipelago of Earthsea, unravelling the complexities of power, identity, and the delicate balance of nature. With its innovative and unusual narrative style, this wonderful novel of exciting and interesting adventures received wide acclaim and spread throughout the world.
Exploring the Boundaries of Identity
The November Book Club proceeds with the quest for thought-provoking literature and takes readers on a captivating journey into the mystical Sahara Desert with our selected book, ‘The Bleeding of the Stone’ by Ibrahim Al-Koni. This mesmerising novel delves deep into the harsh and enigmatic world of the desert, where the lives of nomadic Tuareg tribesmen intersect with the unforgiving landscape. The novel delves further into the themes of tradition, spirituality, and the enduring connection between humans and nature.
Nurturing a passion for written word
Marwa Al Aqroubi, Executive Director of House of Wisdom, highlighted the significance of book clubs in nurturing a passion for the written word, saying, “Bringing all people together through the power of knowledge and culture is always at the heart of what we do at House of Wisdom. This is achieved through book clubs which are not just gatherings, but also a testament to our commitment to cultivating the culture of reading and promoting intellectual dialogue. In these clubs, diverse minds converge, share ideas, and explore worlds within the pages of books.”
She added: “Through these initiatives, we connect various cultures, generations, and backgrounds to one another, and thus enrich our community with treasures of literature. We rather promote HoW as a beacon of knowledge and culture, as well as a platform for addressing issues of interest like sustainability and environment.”
The Book Club series is an engaging initiative that has made a profound impact on the community by bringing enthusiasts and bookworms together. The series, which was held in March, April and May of this year, captured the minds of avid readers and knowledge seekers in Sharjah through ‘Invisible Cities’ by Italo Calvino, ‘Siddhartha’ by Hermann Hesse and the English translation of ‘Gilgamesh’ by Sophus Helle.