The 61st Annual Great Books at Colby Summer Institute

July 23–29, 2017
Location: Colby College, Waterville, Maine
Costs: $610
Who Should Attend: Anyone who loves books, enjoys discussing them with others, and seeks an inexpensive, intellectually stimulating vacation.
Join our annual week of lively discussion at Colby College. We are a community of people who enjoy reading and discussing Great Books. Have you ever closed a book after reading the last page and wished you could share your thoughts with someone? This week offers an opportunity to collaborate in discovering insights rarely achieved just reading alone. Located on a beautiful campus, Colby features a great library, an excellent Museum of Art, tennis courts and first-class athletic facilities with an Olympic swimming pool, as well as waterfront property at a nearby lake open to our participants. This is an inexpensive but classy vacation where readers who love to think and talk about the world's great literary works can derive pleasure from spending time with others who share that enthusiasm. For two hours each day, readers discuss their understanding of thought-provoking classics through the Great Books Foundations Shared Inquiry Method.  Our theme this year is Family Matters!  Family has always had a prominent place in literature. Join us in examining how these great writers explore family relationships.
Adult Readings
Sophocles & Anouilh, Antigone
Edmund Gosse, Father and Son
Vladimir Nabokov, Speak Memory
Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose
Eudora Welty, The Optimist's Daughter
Alice Munro, The Moons of Jupiter; The Progress of Love; and Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage

2017 Junior Great Books Readings

Younger Group, Grades 1-5
Where the Mountain Meets the Moon,
Grace Lin
The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy, Jeanne Birdsall
My Life with the Chimpanzees (Chapters 6-8), Jane Goodall
The Truth of Me, Patricia MacLachlan.

Middle Group, Grades 6-7 & Older Group, Grades 8-10
A Time of Miracles
, Anne-Laure Bondoux
Three Short Stories: The Open Window, Saki, The Gift of the Magi and The Ransom of Red Chief, O. Henry
When My Name Was Keoko, Linda Sue Park
Walk Two Moons, Sharon Creech.

The adult registration of $610 covers books and discussions, as well as lectures, films, group social activities, use of athletic facilities and tennis courts, and a real Maine lobster bake. On-campus registration includes a single or double dormitory room (six nights: Sunday through Friday) and all meals. You can stay over Saturday night either before the week (July 22) or after the week (July 29) for an additional charge. Either night allows you to attend the Atlantic Music Festival's outstanding free classical music concert. We also offer a Children's Program for ages three and above. Commuters participate in all activities, but live on their own, off-campus, and receive lunch each day and the Friday night lobster bake.

Application and Refunds: A deposit for each person is required with an application, one half of which is refundable for cancellations received before July 9, 2017. The balance is due at registration on Sunday, July 23, 2017. We accept credit cards, as well as cash and checks. Books and additional information are mailed after November upon receipt of your initial deposit, usually within two to three weeks, so that you can read beforehand. Our last day for registration is June 30, 2017.

Optional Saturday Nights to Attend the Atlantic Music Festival's Concert:  Extra nights: Saturday, July 22nd ($85, lodging, dinner, breakfast, and lunch) or July 29th ($80, lodging, dinner and breakfast).  Concerts are free.  Please prepay for additional nights with your registration deposit.

Besides registering online above, you can also register by mail.  Click HERE to download a registration form.  Mail it to the address immediately below:

Contact Information

Great Books Summer Institute at Colby
P.O. Box 424
Newtown Square,
PA 19073

Arrival:  Sunday, July 23, 2017

1:30-6:00 p.m.:  Registration - Cotter Union
5:30 p.m.:  First Meal
8:30 p.m.:  Welcome Reception

Daily Discussions:  9:30-11:30 a.m.

Monday:  Antigone: Sophocles, pp. vii-52; Anouilh, pp. 12-71.
Tuesday:  Father and Son, pp. 1-186.
Wednesday:  Speak Memory, pp. 17-310.
Thursday:  Angle of Repose, pp. 3-632.
Friday:  The Optimist's Daughter, p. 3-180.
Saturday: Vintage Munro, pp. 3-57 & 137-191.

Special Events:
Wednesday, 11:45 am, Optional Bus Trip to Transportation Museum at Owl's Head and Rockland, Maine ($35)
Saturday nights, 7/22 ($85) & 7/29 ($80): Optional overnight attendance for Atlantic Music Festival's Free Concerts

Departure:  Saturday, July 29, 2017
11:45 a.m.:  "Hail and Farewell" on the lawn
12:00 p.m.:  Lunch & Departure

Times and locations of other activities for the week, including a lobster bake, films, and the Wachs Works, will be announced at registration.