Common Community Reading
The Catawba Common College Reading Program, started in 2005, is an initiative intended to get you and your fellow incoming first-year students talking about important issues from the minute you arrive on campus. The program affords you an opportunity to participate in and contribute to the intellectual life of the College and provides you with a shared academic experience during Orientation and the first semester.
Themes in the reading are addressed in a variety of contexts: during formal discussion in Orientation, in individual First-Year Seminars, in the community, during informal conversation (with faculty, ALPHAs, coaches, staff, and other students), and in Lilly Center events such as the values and vocation dinner. Thus, the reading provides a common base for discussion among all members of the campus community for the entire year.
The Common Community Reading (CCR) for Catawba College, class of 2022, will be Winston Churchill's "Their Finest Hour." We selected this reading, first, because the United States has been engaged in a series of related wars and lower-level military conflicts, grouped under the overarching “War on Terror” for most or all of the lifetimes of the class of 2022. Some of you are more aware of this than others, but arguably the American public is less aware of and less directly impacted by America’s military engagements today than it has been during the United States’ previous military engagements. However, the severity of consequences of war demand that we remain intellectually engaged with the ideas that surround the decision to fight and the consequences of modern militarized interstate conflict.
- 2017: Martin Luther King's 1964 Nobel Lecture: "The Quest for Peace and Justice."
- 2016: "Stepping Out" by David Sedaris
- 2015: "Even Artichokes Have Doubts" by Marina Keegan
- 2014: Kenyon University Commencement address by the late David Foster Wallace
- 2013: Adam Gopnik's "The Real Work: Modern Magic and the Meaning of Life"
- 2012: Atul Gawande's "The Checklist Manifesto"
- 2011: Dave Egger's "Zeitoun"
- 2010: Greg Mortenson's "Three Cups of Tea"
- 2009: Kevin Sites' "In the Hot Zone: One Man, One Year, Twenty Wars"
- 2008: Jim Wooten's "We Are All the Same"
- 2007: Tracy Kidder's "Mountains Beyond Mountains"
- 2006: Khaled Hosseini's "The Kite Runner"
- 2005: Edward Tenner's "Why Things Bite Back"