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Book Discussion Series Opens the ‘Catalogue’

The “Let’s Talk About it, Oklahoma” book discussion series at Oklahoma City University will continue its winter 2012 season with “Catalogue” by George Milburn at 7 p.m. Feb. 7. 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.

Milburn’s episodic novel examines the follies and foibles of residents in a small eastern Oklahoma town in the mid-1930s. Looking behind the façade, he uses the arrival of the Sears Roebuck and Montgomery Ward catalogues to develop a story of the obsessions, civic concerns, shocking prejudices and surprising relationships among the town’s citizenry.

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:

* Feb. 21 with “Briarpatch” by Ross Thomas

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