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RUG students write reading guides to inspire book clubs

08 July 2022

In June, 17 literature students from the UG completed their reading guides for Foundation Senia’s reading clubs. These reading guides are used by some 1500 book clubs across the Netherlands in discussions about books, as they contain background information and discussion questions. This year seven students wrote for Dutch reading clubs, six for English and four for German. They covered interesting contemporary titles such as Aleksandra by Lisa Weeda about a heartbreaking family history in Ukraine; Crossroads, the latest novel by the well-known American writer Jonathan Franzen; or the biography Die Kanzlerin by Ursula Weidenfeld about the life and politics of Angela Merkel.

While working on the reading guides, the students were able to put their knowledge gained in their study into practice. They worked on it enthusiastically and were thus able to get, sometimes for the first time, a publication to their name. Master's student in Dutch Studies Kees Visser found it not only fun but also a great learning experience to write a reading guide. He hopes that his reading guide about De Terugkeer by Esther Gerritsen will trigger many good discussions in Senia's reading clubs and is happy to be able to contribute to them. English Literature student Inge Stallmann is following the Master's course Writing, Editing and Mediating and has learned a lot, just like Kees. Especially through the content-oriented way in which Senia's working group provided feedback on her reading guide about Crossroads by Jonathan Franzen. She said, "In my course, we usually write academic texts so to now write a text for people who share a love of books is a lot of fun."

"This year I wrote a reading guide for the Senia Foundation for the first time, and hopefully not for the last! " - Kees Visser

The collaboration between Stichting Senia and the Science Shop Language, Culture and Communication has been running since 2010. Senia Foundation organizes reading clubs for elderly people that focus on certain themes or languages - Dutch, English, German, History, Philosophy and more. For this, students write a reading guide about a book chosen by a Senia working group. Then the students and Senia workgroup members talk to each other to tailor the bookmark to the needs and wishes of the reading club members. New writers for the Dutch, English and German bookmarkers are welcome every year, both Master and Bachelor students.

Examples of books
Examples of books
Last modified:08 July 2022 1.17 p.m.
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