Upcoming Events for Fall 2019
To celebrate Don McPherson’s visit to East Stroudsburg University in the fall semester, we will be holding various events covering issues prominent to the book, “Beartown.” We hope you will join us.
- Tuesday, September 26, 2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.,
Science & Technology Center Auditorium, One Book One Campus Presents, “’Words are Not Small Things’: Responding to Sexual Assault,” Speakers: Laura Suits & Peer Mentors; Description: Frederik Backman writes, “She is told all the things she shouldn’t have done: She shouldn’t have waited so long before going to the police. She shouldn’t have gotten rid of the clothes she was wearing. Shouldn’t have showered. Shouldn’t have drunk alcohol. Shouldn’t have put herself in that situation. Shouldn’t have gone into the room, up the stairs, given him the impression. If only she hadn’t existed, then none of this would have happened, why didn’t she think of that? She’s fifteen, above the age of consent, and he’s seventeen, but he’s still ‘the boy’ in every conversation. She’s ‘the young woman.’ Words are not small things.” In this presentation, we will discuss the responses to sexual assault offered in Beartown and work to understand how words and responses matter in providing support and a safe space for those who are victims of sexual assault. Audience members will learn the best means of responding to individuals and how our responses can aid in helping a person move from victim to survivor.
- Wednesday, October 16th, 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.,
Stroud Hall 113, One Book One Campus Presents, “When the Weight of the Community is On Your Shoulders: Athletes Respond to Community Expectations,” Presenters: East Stroudsburg University Student Athletes. Description: Frederik Backman critiques the common refrain, “It’s only a game,” said to athletes and sports teams: “It’s only a game. It only resolves tiny, insignificant things. Such as who gets listened to. It allocates power and draws boundaries and turns some people into stars and others into spectators. That’s all.” Athletes regularly feel the pressure of balancing work and school with their athletics as well as handling the continued expectations of winning. Backman argues, “All organizations like the boast that they’re building a culture, but when it comes down to it everyone really only cares about one sort: the culture of winning.” In this interactive presentation, East Stroudsburg University student-athletes discuss the pressures of representing a community in their respective sports. They will touch on team work, expectations, and consequences of winning and losing. The goal is that the audience will gain a deeper understanding of why we cannot dismiss athletics as “just a game” as the results do have effects on the athletes, on teams, and on the community.
- Tuesday, October 22nd, 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.,
Beers Lecture Hall, One Book One Campus Presents, “Loyalty and Community: A Sociological Perspective,” Presenter: Dr. Marianne Cutler. Description: Frederik Backman writes, “There are few words that are harder to explain than ‘loyalty.’ It’s always regarded as a positive characteristic, because a lot of people would say that many of the best things people do for each other occur precisely because of loyalty. The only problem is that many of the very worst things we do to each other occur because of the same thing. . . . What is a community? It is the sum total of our choices.” Beartown shines a light on the issues of loyalty and how that works to shape a community—for better or worse. In this presentation, Dr. Marianne Cutler, associate professor of sociology, will discuss the sociological aspects of loyalty and community and how these intersect in Frederik Backman’s novel.
Beers Lecture Hall, One Book One Campus Presents, “The Secrets That We Keep,” Presenter: Dr. Eugene Kelly Description: A common theme throughout Beartown is that of secrets. Frederik Backman explains of the revelation of Benji’s secret, “And after all those long hours in the locker room, all those nights on the team bus, all the conversations and all the jokes and the blood, sweat, and tears, the boy didn’t dare tell his coach his biggest secret. That’s betrayal. David knows it’s a huge betrayal. There’s no other way to explain how much a grown man must have failed as a person if such a warrior of a boy could believe that his coach would be less proud of him if he were gay. David hates himself for not being better than his dad. That’s the job of sons.” In this discussion, Dr. Kelly, Interim Dean of Students, explains the psychological need for secrets as well as the consequences of them and how they impact relationships.
- Wednesday November 20- Sunday November 24 (various times),
Smith-MacFarland Theater, East Stroudsburg University’s Theatre Department Presents, Good Kids. Pricing: General Admission $12; Faculty/Staff & Senior Citizens (with ID) $10; Students (with ID) $7; Purchase Tickets. Description: “Something happened to Chloe after that party last Saturday night. Something she says she can’t remember. Something everybody is talking about. Set at a Midwestern high school, in a world of Facebook and Twitter, smartphones and YouTube. Good Kids explores a casual sexual encounter gone wrong and its very public aftermath. Who’s telling the truth? Whose version of the story do you believe? And what does that say about you?” At various performances, there will be talk-back sessions at the conclusion of the performance.