MacArthur Genius Grants

Book cover, Fun Home

The annual MacArthur fellows have been announced, and as usual, reading about the winners is inspiring and even intimidating (statistical analyses? cryptography? nanomaterials?). Also, as usual, several of the winners have written books and several have ties to Chicago. Congratulations to University of Chicago historian Tara Zahra, author of The Lost Children, whose work (as described by the Tribune) […]

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We the People

Original document with preamble of the U.S. Constitution

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” This didn’t mean […]

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Paul Konerko: A Class Act!

baseball resting on homeplate

After 16 years of playing baseball for the Chicago White Sox, first baseman and team captain Paul Konerko is retiring from the game. He has given the city of Chicago some unforgettable moments during his illustrious career. The one that resonates with most fans is the grand slam he hit in Game 2 of the […]

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Celebrating Hispanic Fiction

Row of flags from Latin American countries

I’ve really enjoyed reading my friends’ lists of 10 books most influential to them, a meme popular right now on Facebook. I’ve crafted mine and several in the top 20 (because a librarian can’t stop at 10) are books by Hispanic authors. Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s lyrical storytelling in One Hundred Years of Solitude, the complicated relationships […]

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Discussion Questions: The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

red stars on a blue background

In 1939, a young escape artist and budding magician named Joe Kavalier arrives in New York City on the doorstep of his cousin, Sammy Clay. With Hitler’s shadow falling across Europe, America relishes the Golden Age of comic books. In Brooklyn, Sammy is looking for a way to cash in on the craze. He finds […]

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Guest Blog: Chabon on Chicago

Michael Chabon

Michael Chabon, author of the One Book, One Chicago 2014-15 selection The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, shares a message for Chicagoans. I was deep in the middle of writing Kavalier & Clay. One of my biggest challenges and sources of constant torment and pleasure while writing that book was attempting to bring mid-20th century […]

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Michael Chabon Author Biography

Michael Chabon

Michael Chabon, author of this year's One Book, One Chicago selection, was born in 1963 in Washington, D.C., and raised in Columbia, Maryland. He studied at Carnegie-Mellon and the University of Pittsburgh and received a master of fine arts in creative writing at U.C. Irvine. He has spent the past two decades in California, with occasional stays in […]

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Vital Voices: Jane Addams Hull House Museum

Source: Library of Congress, photo by Moffett

Where would Chicago be if it weren't for Jane Addams? September 18 marks the 125th anniversary of Hull House, the settlement founded by Jane Addams that changed the lives of many individual Chicagoans while also challenging the status quo through reform and activism. The Hull House Association, which carried on the social service aspect of Jane […]

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Cook Your Way Through Hispanic Heritage Month

Plate Costa Rican food consisting of sauteed peppers, onions and beef with beans and salad

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 to October 15) by checking out some of our Latin American cookbooks and adding a few new recipes to your repertoire.  Featuring dishes from Patagonia to Puebla to Ponce and everywhere in between, these books are sure to inspire. The 2013 James Beard Foundation Cookbook of the Year and […]

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Say You Want a Revolution

Say You Want a Revolution

A little rebellion now and then can be good for one's constitution. Maybe one day you'll find yourself mad about something or other, and you'll want to take your fight to the Man. Before you do, remember that other people have tried it before, and there are plenty of lessons to learn. Thomas Paine and the […]

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