Common Reading at Elon

The Elon Core Curriculum and the Elon Common Reading Committee are excited to announce that the 2023-2024 Common Reading is I Never Thought of It That Way: How to Have Fearlessly Curious Conversations in Dangerously Divided Times by Mónica Guzmán.

This year, for the first time in the 30-year history of the Common Reading program, every first-year student will be provided with a free electronic copy of the Common Reading! More information about receiving your copy–and what to do next!–will be provided in June 2023.

Mónica Guzmán is a bridge builder, journalist, and author who lives for great conversations sparked by curious questions. She’s Senior Fellow for Public Practice at Braver Angels, the nation’s largest cross-partisan grassroots organization working to depolarize America; founder and CEO of Reclaim Curiosity, an organization working to build a more curious world; cofounder of the award-winning Seattle newsletter The Evergrey; and advisor for Starts With Us and the Generations Over Dinner project. She was a 2019 fellow at the Henry M. Jackson Foundation, where she studied social and political division, and a 2016 fellow at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University, where she researched how journalists can rethink their roles to better meet the needs of a participatory public.

Guzmán will deliver an in-person keynote on the evening of Thursday, September 21. Other opportunities for students, faculty, staff, and the community to discuss the book and learn from Guzmán will also be available.

The Common Reading marks the beginning of the Elon Core Curriculum, the shared courses and experiences that put knowledge into practice and enable the integration of learning across the disciplines.

Consistent with the Elon University mission of nurturing a rich intellectual community, the Elon Common Reading Program (ECRP) challenges students, faculty, and staff to examine themselves and the local and global worlds they inhabit through reading. The readings and related discussions aim not only to encourage critical reflection about important issues but also to invite consideration of how our individual actions affect these issues.

The ECRP will:

  • Offer diverse perspectives and commentary on key issues affecting our lives;
  • Provide forums to question and discuss these perspectives in depth;
  • Encourage integration of these ideas and perspectives in other aspects of the Elon experience;
  • Foster critical thinking by offering multiple opportunities to examine and reflect upon the reading throughout the year.