SPRINGFIELD — On Thursday, June 17, at 10 a.m., the Great Books Discussion Group, which meets on the third Thursday of each month, will investigate various aspects of Edgar Allen Poe’s work.
Poe (1809-1849), was born in Boston, the child of traveling stage actors. His father abandoned them and his mother died before he was three. He was taken in by the Allen family who educated him first in Richmond and then at two boarding schools in London. He came back and enrolled at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, but never finished. He enlisted in the Army, served his time, and then went to West Point from which he was subsequently dismissed.
Following these travels, he developed into an ambitious and industrious literary editor and continued to write steadily. By the 1840’s he had achieved enough of an audience to initiate a series of public lectures on poetry. His “The Raven” had received national attention, and his short stories provided a working theory of the short story genre itself. He became known for the macabre, and “The Fall of the House of Usher” is a prime example of his art.
The Great Books compilation may be purchased for $25 at the Circulation Desk. The discussion group welcomes new members. Participants are invited to come to any or all of the sessions.
The program is free and open to all. The Springfield Free Public Library is located at 66 Mountain Avenue, Springfield. For additional information, call 973-376-4930.
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