Let’s Talk About It

Let’s Talk About It has long been the backbone of library programming offered by SC Humanities as well as councils across the country. These book discussion series are designed around themes ranging from women’s autobiography to the importance of heritage in South Carolina literature.

Let's Talk About It!The LTAI groups meet every other week to discuss each book in the series, and each meeting features group discussions led by a qualified scholar (a different scholar for each book). Scheduling of the series, meeting facilities, and other such details are left to the library’s discretion. But, rest assured: SC Humanities has all the publicity tools, scholar suggestions, and general advice you will need to make your programs attract patrons and run smoothly.

Be sure to check out our list of available series, download the application form, and contact us if you need help finding scholars or would like to check the availability of a series. If you have any questions, check our FAQ first. You’re certain to find lots of intriguing topics and titles.

New LTAI Series!

Tragic Affairs Abroad

This mixed-media series pairs books and films about the timeless intersection of romance and tragedy.

The Painted Veil by W. Somerset Maugham
The Painted Veil
(2006 film version)
A Passage to India by E.M. Forster
A Passage to India (1984 film version)
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
Memoirs of a Geisha (2005 film version)
Girl with the Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
Girl with the Pearl Earring (2003 film version)
The End of the Affair by Graham Greene
The End of the Affair (1955 film version)

How We Got To Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World

Mixed Media Series
Using Steven Johnson’s bestselling book and the accompanying PBS documentary, this series explores the history of innovation over centuries, tracing facets of modern life (refrigeration, clocks, and eyeglass lenses, to name a few) from their creation by hobbyists, amateurs, and entrepreneurs to their unintended historical consequences.

How We Got to Now: Six Innovations that Made the Modern World by Steven Johnson
How We Got to Now with Steven Johnson – PBS documentary (360 minutes)
(Accommodates 50)

Six Suggested sessions, pairing the book section with the appropriate PBS series episode:

Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle – Film Series

Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities that uses the power of documentary films to encourage community discussion of America’s civil rights history. NEH partnered with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History to produce this series. The series contains four films.

The Abolitionists (2012)
Slavery by Another Name (2012)
The Loving Story (2011)
Freedom Ride

Muslim Journeys: Points of View

The drama of conflict, chaos, and war come to Western readers in daily newspaper stories, but the news gives us scant details about how people live their lives in Islamabad, Fez, Cairo, or Tehran. Through the titles in “Points of View,” readers will encounter individual experiences in Muslim-majority societies through memoirs and novels representing a diverse geography and some of the best contemporary storytelling.

In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar
Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi
House of Stone by Anthony Shadid
Broken Verses by Kamila Shamsie
Dreams of Trespass by Fatima Mernissi
(Accommodates 40)

**The Bridging Cultures Bookshelf is a project of NEH, conducted in cooperation with the ALA Public Programs Office, with support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Additional support for the arts and media components was provided by the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Arts. Local support is provided by SC Humanities and the South Carolina State Library.

Making Sense of the Civil War

In commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, the National Endowment for the Humanities and American Library Association have awarded the South Carolina Humanities Council a grant for a new Let’s Talk About It series, “Making Sense of the Civil War.”  Read more about this exciting new series.

March by Geraldine Brooks
Crossroads of Freedom: Antietam by James McPherson
America’s War, a new anthology of historical fiction, diaries, memoirs, and short stories, ed. Edward L. Ayers.
(Accommodates 50)

Libraries praise Let’s Talk About It

“We had no adult programming for a number of years. We obtained two of the LTAI programs within one fiscal year, and our adults loved the discussions.”
~Cristi Bade, Kershaw County Library

“The visiting scholars are wonderful and add so much to the book discussion!”
~Dianne Boersma, Berkeley County Library

“Participants enjoyed talking to each other about what they had read, but they seemed especially hungry for the scholar’s information—they were eager for a learning experience.”
~Sarah McMaster, Fairfield County Library

“Modern American Poets: Voices and Visions was a very positive experience for me both as staff of a sponsoring library and as a participant. I was excited to see how enriching the experience was for participants—many of whom were completely unfamiliar with poets such as Wallace Stevens and Elizabeth Bishop.”
~Mary Jo Dawson, ABBE Regional Library System

“We normally do LTAI in the winter, since our snowbirds are more responsive than the locals. They just love Let’s Talk About It!”
~Shelley Ridout, North Myrtle Beach Library

“The one complaint I occasionally receive is that I cut off the discussions too soon.”
~Sara Breibart, Charleston County Library