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The Commons Reading

The Happiness HypothesisEvery incoming first-year class has something in common before arriving on campus: The Commons Reading – a text that all students with a domestic mailing address receive in the mail prior to move-in and are expected to read. International students receive their copies of the book when they arrive to campus. This assignment forms the basis for a community-wide dialogue that begins during orientation and continues throughout the year and takes place in houses, Vanderbilt Visions groups, and across campus. In the fall, all students will attend the annual Lawson Lecture which focuses on topics related to the reading. The Commons Reading is selected by a committee of faculty VUceptors. The Commons Reading for the Class of 2022 is The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom by Jonathan Haidt

Past Commons Readings

  • 2017- Strong Inside: Perry Wallace and the Collision of Race and Sports in the South by Andrew Maraniss
  • 2016- Strong Inside: Perry Wallace and the Collision of Race and Sports in the South by Andrew Maraniss
  • 2015 – The Madonnas of Echo Park by Brando Skyhorse
  • 2014 – Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward
  • 2013 – College: What It Was, Is, and Should Be by Andrew Delbanco
  • 2012 – Half the Sky by Nicholas D. Kristof & Sheryl WuDunn
  • 2011 – The Good Life by Peter Gomes
  • 2010 – Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin

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