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Book Discussion Series Looks at Oklahoma Town and Country

The “Let’s Talk About it, Oklahoma” book discussion series at Oklahoma City University will open its winter 2012 season with “A Tour on the Prairies” by Washington Irving at 7 p.m. Jan. 10. The series is a project of the Oklahoma Humanities Council with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Funding for this series was provided by a grant from the Inasmuch Foundation.

The discussion is free to the public and will be held in Walker Center room 151 at N.W. 26th Street and Florida Avenue.

“A Tour on the Prairies” is a historical work that describes a 1830s land of frontier outposts in the present-day areas of Stillwater, Edmond, Oklahoma City and Norman. Irving records landscape markers still recognizable today as he observes roving bands of warrior hunters and rag-tag parties of white “rangers” in a heterogeneously populated world.

Harbour Winn, director of OCU’s Center for Interpersonal Studies through Film & Literature, said the purpose of this season’s book discussion series is to explore the rich history of Oklahoma.

“The books in this program illuminate aspects of human development in our state’s history, from the emptiness of the Oklahoma prairie to its towns and two large cities of today,” Winn said.

At each session in the series, a humanities scholar makes a presentation on the book in the context of the theme. Small group discussions follow with experienced discussion leaders. At the end, all participants come together for a brief wrap-up.

Those who are interested in participating are encouraged to preregister and borrow the reading selections and theme brochure by calling Winn at (405) 208-5472, e-mailing him at hwinn@okcu.edu or dropping by the Dulaney-Browne Library room 211 or 207.

Other dates and books in the series are:

* Jan. 24 with “Sand in My Eyes” by Seigniora Russell Luane

* Feb. 7 with “Catalogue” by George Milburn

* Feb. 21 with “Briarpatch” by Ross Thomas

* March 6 with “Flight from Innocence: A Memoir, 1927-1947” by Judson Jerome