Strive On to Finish the Work We Are In: A Bit of Inspiration
In our August newsletter, we asked readers to tell us what book (or story, or poem) inspires them to make a difference in the world. Get inspired with these suggestions - in our collection or available directly on the web.
- "Invictus" by William Ernest Henley - the famous statement summarized in "I am the master of my fate/I am the captain of my soul."
- "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot
- "Still I Rise" by Maya Angelou - or enjoy it read by Marialuisa Monda as part of our 30 Days of Poetry this past April - or by Ms. Angelou herself at this top of this list of powerful recordings
- The Citadel's Cadet Prayer - "And I'm not religious!" the contributor commented.
- Abraham Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address
- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - and learn more about Lee from this lecture by Casey Cep, February 2021
- Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. Alcott and her characters were also named as favorites in our March 2021 Women's History Month survey! This contributor comments, "Alcott...was raised as a pedagogical experiment by Bronson Alcott, nurtured by a strong mother and the rest of Concord Circle: Waldo Emerson and Henry Thoreau....[H]er love for her family despite all of the poverty made her look to telling their story in order to help them not only survive but inspire others. The sister she sent to Paris to study art eventually inspired sculptor William Chester French. And they are buried as they lived, all together in Concord. She inspired me."
- Walden by Henry David Thoreau
- Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose
- Go Tell It On the Mountain by James Baldwin (also available as an ebook or audiobook)
- The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
- Black Like Me by John Howard Griffin
- Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler
- Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
- Homeland Elegies: A Novel by Ayad Akhtar (also available as an ebook)
Contemporary Nonfiction and Memoirs
- The Quest for Cosmic Justice by Thomas Sowell
- Such Good Girls: The Journey of the Holocaust's Hidden Child Survivors by R.D. Rosen
- Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich
- You Don't Belong Here: How Three Women Rewrote the Story of War by Elizabeth Becker
- Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt
Inspiration for All Ages