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Book One

The Book One Program at Bard College at Simon’s Rock requires new students to read their first book of our General Education program over the summer. The work serves as the basis for reflection, discussion, and writing during Writing & Thinking Workshop and throughout the First Year Seminar course sequence, and the author visits and presents a lecture on campus during the fall semester. Each year, a different book is selected from a list of new and noteworthy publications and the shared experience of reading and  talking about the text helps to shape each class’s unique first academic experiences at Simon's Rock. A copy of Book One will be mailed to each incoming student as they complete the deposit process.

We are proud to announce that the 2013 Book One is Open City, written by Teju Cole. The 2013 Book One Lecture will take place on Monday, August 19th at 7:00 PM in the McConnell Theater.

Teju Cole is a writer, art historian, and street photographer. He is the author of two books: a novella, Every Day is for the Thief, and a novel, Open City, which won the PEN/Hemingway Award, was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and named one of the best books of 2011 by the New Yorker, the New York Times, and Time Magazine.

Teju Cole was born in the US in 1975 to Nigerian parents, raised in Nigeria, and currently lives in Brooklyn. His first novel, Open City, was awarded the Rosenthal Family  Foundation Prize of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the New York City Book Award for Fiction; nominated for the National Book Critics Award, the New York Public Library’s Young Lions Award, and a prize from the Royal Society of Literature; and named one of the best books of 2011 by, Newsweek, the Guardian, the Atlantic, the New York Times, and many others. Cole is a contributor to many leading journals and magazines, and has given presentations and lectures all over the world. He is currently at work on a non-fiction book about Lagos, and is preparing an exhibition of his photographs for late 2012. He teaches literature and art history at Bard College, where he is Distinguished Writer in Residence and Achebe Fellow.