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The cover of the book "An Immense World" by Ed Yong, which features a still photo of a monkey observing a butterfly

Common Read

2023 Common Read Selection

An Immense World by Ed Yong has been selected as the 2023 Campus and Community Common Read. Rebecca Skloot, author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, says "This book feels like a tremendous burst of oxygen, animating everything around us with life and color and texture and wonder at precisely the moment we all need it."

Ed Yong is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, and is the author of two New York Times bestsellers - our 2023 Common Read An Immense World, about the extraordinary sensory worlds of other animals; and I Contain Multitudes, about the amazing partnerships between animals and microbes.

An Immense World won the Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction, and was listed as one of the top books of the year by the New York Times, the New Yorker, the Wall Street Journal, Slate, the Economist, People, and more than 30 other lists.

In 2023 we will begin Sensing "Our" World, where we take the opportunity to explore our own sensory experiences while learning, understanding, and appreciating the experience of animals that share the natural world with us. In doing so, we look forward to provoking dialogue and conversation, generating questions, fueling curiosity, and further applying what we learn to ourselves, and the broader world we share with others, animal and human.

What is the Common Read?

Each year, Honors champions a campus and community Common Read experience. This initiative is designed to bring together people from all areas of campus and the Brookings community to learn, discuss and engage a singular, impactful book and associated themes.

The Common Read started in 2009. It was originally designed to raise the level of academic challenge at SDSU, enhance our awareness of diverse perspectives, increase faculty and student interaction, encourage service, and promote enriching, engaging educational experiences both inside and outside class.

The Common Read Committee is a group of students, faculty, staff and community members who plan and implement the Common Read experience each year. The group selects the book, provides training for faculty and staff who will be teaching the book and plans numerous events designed to encourage participation and employ critical thinking around the text. 

Throughout the fall semester, the Common Read Committee partners with the Brookings Human Rights Commission and other campus and community groups to sponsor and support Common Read events on campus and within the Brookings community. These strong partnerships garner a large amount of campus and community support and involvement with the Common Read. 

Last Year's Common Read Selection

Crossing the Line by Kareem Rosser was the selection for the 2022 Campus and Community Common Read. Previous Common Read author Wes Moore says, "Crossing the Line is truly a special book. It will leave you with not just hope but also ideas on how to make that hope transferable."

Kareem Rosser is from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He received his BA in economics from Colorado State University, where he led his collegiate polo team to a national championship. Kareem is a financial analyst and serves as the executive director of the nonprofit Friends of Work to Ride.

In 2022 we explored the acronym T.E.A.M.: Truth, Empowerment, Attitude, Mentoring.