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Con­ser­vatism, life, faith, and culture are but a few of the topics under dis­cussion at this semester’s crop of campus book clubs.

The Lyceum, Sym­posium, Faith and Works, and Stu­dents for Middle Eastern Dis­course book clubs are all back this semester offering an assortment of reading and dis­cussion options for stu­dents.

Book clubs are about bringing dis­cus­sions outside the classroom, said sophomore Sammy Roberts, leader of the Lyceum’s freshman book club. Some people want to shut the door on their classwork, but stu­dents should fight to pursue truth both inside and outside of class, Roberts said.

“I was kind of hes­itant to join the Lyceum book club, because I thought I was doing enough reading already with Her­itage and Great Books classes,” Roberts said. “But once I got in there, it was so much fun. Usually someone brings baked bread or jam or some­thing like that, and instead of being forced to have a dis­cussion like in a classroom, we really enjoyed dis­cussing the text.”

Roberts said he joined the Lyceum’s freshman book club during spring 2016 and read “The Intel­lectual Life” by French Dominican monk Antonin Ser­tillanges. Roberts then became a Lyceum board member and now assists with this year’s book club.

“We talked about getting a dif­ferent book for the freshmen,” Roberts said. “But the ‘Intel­lectual Life’ is a really good intro­duction because it talks about what we’re doing here at Hillsdale.”

The Lyceum also offers a book club for upper­classmen. This semester, the club is reading “Fes­tivity” by Joseph Weaver.

After a semester-long hiatus, the Sym­posium book club is back to discuss Walker Percy’s “Lost in the Cosmos,” a self-help parody about finding oneself in a seem­ingly mean­ingless modern world, book club leader sophomore Nic Rowan said.

“The Sym­posium is inter­ested in exploring intel­lectual con­ser­vatism, which means reading outside the tra­di­tional cur­riculum,” Rowan said. “We look at more modern con­ser­v­a­tives like Alasdair Mac­Intyre or Patrick Deneen.”

For those looking for more ways to work their faith into their everyday lives, The Faith & Works Project is diving into “For the Least of These: A Bib­lical Answer to Poverty” by Anne Bradley and Arthur Lindsley.

“The book this semester tries to answer the question of what role Chris­tians play in alle­vi­ating poverty by com­bining exe­gesis with eco­nomic prin­ciples,” sophomore co-leader Anna Perry said.

Perry said the Institute of Faith, Work, and Eco­nomics rec­om­mends the book and pro­vides the group with study guides to further dis­course.

Addi­tionally, for those inter­ested in Israel or Middle Eastern affairs, the Middle Eastern club is reading “Israel: a Concise History of a Nation Reborn” by Daniel Gordis.

The club’s pres­ident, junior Hannah Brewer, said the book club is meant to inform those inter­ested in the Middle East and also to provide an outlet whereby Hillsdale stu­dents who visited Israel through the Pas­sages trip to the Holy Land can stay engaged in Middle Eastern affairs.

Asso­ciate Pro­fessor of English, Justin Jackson, is also holding a book club this semester on Athanasius’ “On the Incar­nation,” a book C.S. Lewis called “a picture of the Tree of Life.” The club takes place on Fridays from 12 – 1 p.m. in the Delp Hall Ground Floor Con­ference Room.