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Alumni Book Club #1: A Survival Guide for Today Boccaccio’s Decameron

  • Repeats: Every week on Tuesday from January 5, 2021 to February 9, 2021.
  • Date: Tuesday, January 5, 2021
  • Time: 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm
  • Location: Zoom

Jan.-Feb. Book Club #1 A Survival Guide for Today: Boccaccio’s The Decameron

A deadly plague arrived, affecting men and women alike. Some people thought living moderately would help them resist the disease and they lived in isolation from everyone else. Still others maintained the surest medicine for such an evil disease was to enjoy life's pleasures. The advice of doctors and the power of medicine was challenged. 

Would you be surprised to learn this is a paraphrase of words written nearly 700 years ago? Come along on a virtual book club literary journey as we discuss selected stories from The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio. This 14th century collection of one hundred tales, told over ten nights by ten different people escaping a pandemic, is a classic. It has influenced, among others, Chaucer and Shakespeare. Laugh, cry or be outraged as we explore themes such as love, (mis)fortune, and urban vs, rural values that may resonate with us today.

Alumna Moderator
Michele Minske '84, is a corporate paralegal who enjoys reading, sports and classic television.

Faculty Moderator
Ruth Caldwell taught French and Italian language and literature at Luther from 1971 to 2015. Since she can’t travel these days, she has been a volunteer guide for several Luther College Virtual Alumni Book Clubs—Paideia III.

Note: There are many editions, and we suggest this one: The Decameron, by Giovanni Boccaccio and Wayne A. Rebhorn (Translator). Norton: 2014. Be sure to get the 2014 edition, ISBN-13: 9780393350265... it has over 1,000 pages and all 100 of the stories. Some of the other versions by Rebhorn are abridged! It’s available on hard copy or Kindle. We will not read all the stories together, but the selections are not yet determined.

The Decameron Book Club will meet on Zoom Tuesdays from 5:00-6:30 p.m. CST beginning in January, 2021 (January 5, 12, 19, 26, February 2, 9). REGISTER HERE for The Decameron!

Questions? Contact Kirk Johnson, 563-387-1659

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