Our book for August is "Elmer Gantry" by Nobel Prize-winning author Sinclair Lewis.
Note: As the weather should be excellent for an outside event, we will be meeting in person rather than via Zoom. See updated location.
We will sit outside - socially distanced. You should bring:
- A chair
- Water (or any other beverage you wish to bring) and snacks
Restrooms (port-o-potties - they were well-cleaned when we checked this location out last month) are in the (library) parking lot.
Universally recognized as a landmark in American literature, "Elmer Gantry" scandalized readers when it was first published, causing Sinclair Lewis to be “invited” to a jail cell in New Hampshire and to his own lynching in Virginia. His portrait of a golden-tongued evangelist who rises to power within his church—a saver of souls who lives a life of duplicity, sensuality, and ruthless self-indulgence—is also the record of a period, a reign of grotesque vulgarity, which but for Lewis would have left no trace of itself. "Elmer Gantry" has been called the greatest, most vital, and most penetrating study of hypocrisy that has been written since the works of Voltaire.
“[Sinclair Lewis’s] satiric indictment of fundamentalist religion that caused an uproar upon its publication in 1927. The title character of Elmer Gantry starts out as a greedy, shallow, philandering Baptist minister, turns to evangelism, and eventually becomes the leader of a large Methodist congregation. Throughout the novel Gantry encounters fellow religious hypocrites [and although] he is often exposed as a fraud, Gantry is never fully discredited. – The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature
Chris Stedman was the first Executive Director of the Yale Humanist Community. Chris will be joining us via Zoom to discuss his new book, and talking about "Finding Realness, Meaning, and Belonging in Our Digital Lives"
This is our monthly dinner discussion group. We meet at a local restaurant. The topic is announced closer to the date of the event. There is some required reading or watching to prime everyone for the discussion. We try to split up into groups of 6-8 people.