Summer reading from the Clayman Institute: September picks

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Summer reading from the Clayman Institute: September picks

For September, we recommend 'America and the Pill' and 'Guyland'

by Electra Colevas on Tuesday, August 27, 2013 - 9:25am

Before school starts and leaves begin to fall, read a great book—one that inspires discussion and debate. As in July and August, we’ve recommended a couple books and included thought-provoking questions to guide conversation. For September, we suggest Elaine Tyler May's America and the Pill and Michael Kimmel's Guyland. Addressing divergent topics, both books are relevant and poignant social commentaries.

America and the Pill book coverAmerica and the Pill: A History of Promise, Peril, and Liberation

By Elaine Tyler May

In 1960, the FDA announced approval for the birth control pill. The pill quickly became the most popular form of contraception in the country and one of the best-selling drugs in U.S. history. It was hailed as a magic bullet that would halt the global population explosion, eradicate war and poverty worldwide, and ensure happy and stable marriages. It would be given credit (or blame) for the sexual revolution and would become the focus of widespread challenges to the authority of religious leaders, doctors, pharmaceutical companies, and lawmakers. 

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Guyland book coverGuyland: The Perilous World Where Boys become Men

By Michael Kimmel

Growing up has become more complex and confusing, as young men drift casually through college and beyond—hanging out, partying, playing with tech toys, and watching sports. But beneath the appearance of a simple extended boyhood, a more dangerous social world has developed, far away from the traditional signposts and cultural signals that once helped boys navigate their way to manhood—a territory Michael Kimmel has identified as "Guyland." Only by understanding this world and this life stage can we enable young men to chart their own paths, stay true to themselves, and emerge safely from Guyland as responsible and fully formed male adults.

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Download discussion questions for both September books, or browse our book recommendations for July and August.