What we're about

"The only thing that is new in the world is the history we haven't read" Harry Truman. This Book Club/Discussion Group is for those interested in reading about World History and U.S. Foreign Affairs.

Our basic charter is to read good books. We are interested in a mix of world history, current topics of significant events that effect the world, U.S. foreign affairs, and an occasional biography of a significant world leader.

Our book selections give preference to: The Lionel Gelber Prize (best non-fiction books on foreign affairs), the Pulitzer Prize (History, Biography and some related Non-Fiction), Arthur Ross Literary Awards, Duff-Cooper Prize, Foreign Policy Association (list of 10 books every student of international relations should read), Foreign Affairs Magazine (Annual Best Books List), and the U.S. State Department list of books recommended to prepare for the Foreign Service Officers Examination.

Prospective members are asked to see the books we have read, and the ones selected for future reading, to determine their level of interest before they consider joining our group. View the previous and future Meetup postings for titles and information about the books. Our most active members are retired, and we recognize that not everyone has the time available to read a book every month that is over 500 pages. We welcome participation from those who might only have time to read a selection every couple of months. To this end we list the books that we will be reading each year about 6 months in advance, so that folks can select ones they are interested in and get a head start on reading if there available time is limited.

Our goal in discussion is to enrich our understanding of the material presented by the author. We do this by asking questions, and by offering considered responses based upon individual interpretations of the text. Our discussion is narrowly focused on the material presented in the text. Our discussions are not debates, and we strongly discourage political commentary. We endorse the concept, and respect the philosophy of Shared Inquiry. These five points of Shared Inquiry are borrowed from the Great Books Organization:

1. Read the selection carefully before participating in the discussion

2. Discuss the ideas in the text and explore them fully.

3. Support (your) interpretations of the text with evidence from the work.

4. Listen carefully to other participants and respond to them directly.

5. The Discussion Leader offers open questions to stimulate discussion. However, that person is also free to ask (or answer) questions to (or from) other members of the group.

We ask our members to employ the social skills of polite conversation, and to avoid lengthy commentary. An economy of words, and the opportunity for everyone to participate, makes for a much more pleasant evening. Matters of partisan politics, personal opinion and debate are not part of our charter. Its all about the text, and improving our understanding of the author's work.

After every meeting we meet at a local establishment for a beer, snacks and conversation. Everyone is welcome, and invited to attend. The current spot is Pronto's Restaurant in the shopping center near the NW corner of Bloomingdale Road and Army Trail Road.

Upcoming events (5)

World History and Foreign Affairs Book Club and Discussion Group

Our book for July is: "Karl Marx: A Nineteenth Century Life". 2014 Pulitzer Prize - Finalist. General Non-Fiction We will be discussing the first half of the book today, and the second half of the book on August 25. All Active Members are asked to RSVP, either "Yes" or "No". Anyone interested in joining our group may attend as our guest by contracting: [masked].

World History and Foreign Affairs Book Club and Discussion Group

Our book for July is: "Karl Marx: A Nineteenth Century Life". 2014 Pulitzer Prize - Finalist. General Non-Fiction We will be discussing the second half of the book today. All Active Members are asked to RSVP, either "Yes" or "No". Anyone interested in joining our group may attend as our guest by contracting: [masked].

World History and Foreign Affairs Book Club and Discussion Group

Our book for August is: "Global Economic History: A Very Short Introduction". Oxford Press. Only 195 pages! We will be discussing the first half of the book today, and the second half of the book on September 22. All Active Members are asked to RSVP, either "Yes" or "No". Anyone interested in joining our group may attend as our guest by contracting: [masked].

World History and Foreign Affairs Book Club and Discussion Group

Our book for August is: "Global Economic History: A Very Short Introduction". Oxford Press. Only 195 pages! We will be discussing the second half of the book today. All Active Members are asked to RSVP, either "Yes" or "No". Anyone interested in joining our group may attend as our guest by contracting: [masked].