Himalayas of Literature

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2019 Reading List

Course Overview

For curious minds who love the challenge of reading difficult books, our Himalayas of Literature Course Series offers expert instruction and a community of climbers that focus on one literary mountain at a time.

Climbing the highest peaks on the planet is the ultimate physical accomplishment. Nearly everyone has daydreamed of some great feat: climbing the highest mountains, visiting remote but beautiful places across the globe, making a great discovery that betters many lives, solving a difficult problem in math or physics, playing the whole Beethoven Sonata cycle or some other Herculean feat of musical prowess, and yes, reading and understanding great but very difficult books.

Our group of expeditionary adventurers will attempt, over approximately a twelve-month course, to scale six mountains of literature, each with a unique difficulty to overcome and a treasure to be found upon completion. Aided by guides, both digital and human, and working together to overcome challenges presented by the material, we will become not only better readers, but more alive to the potential locked within our minds.

For many of us reading is as important as breath. The specific books chosen for this course exist in the rare air at the height of literary achievement. All six novels fall into the modern and post-modern realm of literary criticism. This is the era beyond realism where the questions that wake us in the middle of the night linger and play. The discipline involved to simply read the words is only the first step. Every book stands alone as a work of art, and art only lives when the audience gets involved with the artist in the creative process.