Previous Georgia College Convocation Program Selections
Georgia College's Convocation Experience Program is designed to provide a common experience for incoming students, to enhance participation in the intellectual life of the campus through stimulating discussion and critical thinking around a current topic, and to encourage a sense of community between students, faculty and staff.
The current book was chosen by a committee comprised of faculty, staff, and students with the charge of selecting a book that promotes cross-discipline discussions, introduces ideas that are both thought-provoking and lend themselves to diverse approaches. The Committee also seeks book selections that touch on contemporary issues and that are sufficiently relatable to both first-year students and the campus community.
Previous Convocation Books:
2012 Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis is a graphic novel that depicts the author's childhood and early adult life before, during and after the Islamic Revolution in Iran.
2011 Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life revolves around the concept of improving the family's diet by eating only foods that her family was able to grow themselves. Kingsolver, along with her husband and daughters, start a farm in Virginia where they grow and can different varieties of tomatoes, learn about rooster husbandry, make cheese, and adjust to eating foods only when they are locally in season. The book contrasts this with the ecological costs of growing food in factory farms, transporting it thousands of miles, and adding chemical preservatives so it will not spoil
2010 John Marks' Reasons to Believe generated a range of engaging topics for our academic community to discuss and explore; including how to…engage in civil discourse with individuals with opposing beliefs, assess long arguments, examine complex questions without feeling awkward or challenged, and recognize the difference between knowing and believing.
2009 Nawal El Saadawi's Woman at Point Zero: an existential portrait of a woman abused, imprisoned, and finally executed in body by her patriarchal culture even as her mind learns to speak truth to power.
2008 Tayari Jones's Leaving Atlanta: a coming-of-age, debut novel set against the backdrop of the late 1970s Atlanta child murders that broaches questions of class, race, and family conflict from the point of view of three middle-school children.
2007 Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Purple Hibiscus: a debut novel focusing on a fifteen-year-old Nigerian girl whose family is controlled by a religious fanatic father.
2006 Silas House's Clay's Quilt: a debut novel about the piecing together of one's lost family history.
2005 Ruben Martinez's Crossing Over: an ethnography of Mexican American immigrants, both legal and illegal, set in their homes in Mexico and in their adopted homes in the U.S..
2004 J. Joaqun Fraxedas's The Lonely Crossing of Juan Cabrera: a Hemingway-like novel of three Cubans who endure a hurricane as they flee on a small raft from their homeland to Florida.
2003 Janisse Ray's Ecology of a Cracker Childhood: a memoir of growing up in a junkyard in South Georgia interlaced with Rachel Carson-like chapters that recount the history and the effects of the loss of the state's native longleaf pine forests.
2002 Melissa Fay Greene's Praying for Sheetrock: a nonfiction story of the rise and fall of the first black commissioner of McIntosh County, Georgia.
2001 Lee Smith's Oral History: a novel that captures the folklore and the history of an Appalachian family from the late 19th century to the late-mid 20th century.
2000 Dr. Lori Arviso Alvord's The Scalpel and the Silver Bear: autobiographical tale of a Navaho torn between practicing the methods of medicine preferred by her culture versus the ways taught by her professional training at Dartmouth and Stanford.
1999 Denise Giardina's Storming Heaven: a historical novel tracing the pain of unionizing the coal mines of Kentucky and West Virginia in the early 20th century.
1998 Fred Chappell's Brighten the Corner Where You Are: a comic novel set in 1946 and told by the son of an innovative rural North Carolina schoolteacher whose approach to the theory of evolution sets him at odds with the local school board.