September 14, 2017
On Friday, September 8, 2017, the John V. Roach Honors College hosted the inaugural gathering of the “Honors Common Reading.” As an extension of the TCU Common Reading, a shared learning experience for all incoming TCU students, the Honors Common Reading provided an opportunity for incoming Honors students, faculty, and staff to view the film Children of Heaven by Majid Majidi.
Children of Heaven is a 90 minute film with English subtitles, and it was the first Iranian film to receive an Academy Award nomination. The story centers around a young brother and sister who find themselves secretly sharing a pair of shoes after the girl’s shoes are lost. The film provides a candid view of everyday life for this family and offers insight into Iranian culture, specifically family dynamics, discipline, relationships, and values.
After the screening, Dr. Hanan Hammad, Dr. Rima Abunasser, and Dr. Manochehr Dorraj brought their respective disciplinary expertise to a fruitful and engaging panel discussion of the film. Moreover, following the gathering, Honors students, faculty, and staff continue to process the film. Dr. Rob Garnett, Associate Dean of the Honors College, notes that “the characters of Ali and Zahra challenge us to imagine more humane responses to the urgency of their unmet needs and wants: responses that arise from practical wisdom and virtue.”
The Honors Common Reading was a successful opportunity for Honors to incorporate the Honors experience into a film that coincided with the TCU Common Reading. Honors looks forward to continuing the Honors Common Reading tradition in the years to come.