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One Book One Northwestern

Read more about the selection

2018-19 One Book selection announced

The Handmaid’s Tale, a gripping and chillingly relevant vision of our society radically overturned by a theocratic revolution, has been chosen as Northwestern University’s One Book One Northwestern all-campus read for the 2018-19 academic year. The author of The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood, will deliver a keynote address Oct. 30 at both the Chicago and Evanston campuses. All first-year students are given a copy of the One Book each year.

Tickets for the Evanston event will be available starting Sept. 30th. Priority will be given to Northwestern students, faculty, and staff. Should tickets not sell out by October 25th, then they will be made available to the general public. To register for tickets, visit

The Handmaid’s Tale includes depictions of violence, including sexual violence. If you would like to discuss how the book has impacted you personally the Center for Awareness, Response, and Education (CARE) at Northwestern is a confidential space on campus to discuss issues related to sexual violence, relationship violence, stalking, or harassment. Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) also provides clinical services, including 24-hour telephone support, at 847-491-2151. You can learn more about the resources including counseling, reporting, and advocacy at CARE and CAPS.

Helen Thompson, Faculty Chair

A Note from Helen Thompson, One Book One Northwestern Faculty Chair

One Book Program Update:

In response to expressions of concern from the Northwestern University community, we have decided to cancel the One Book One Northwestern escape room scheduled for October 5 and 6 in the Norris Center.  It was not the intention of those who planned this event to trivialize the historical atrocities that Atwood’s novel depicts.  But as Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony at the Supreme Court hearing of Justice Brett Kavanaugh last week painfully reminds us, the very metaphor of escape represents a cruel impossibility for persons suffering structural injustice in this city, this country, and this world.  Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale demands that we recognize the incomplete justice still accorded women and other minoritarian subjects and imagine the dystopia that might follow.  What happens next is up to us.  We anticipate a year of exciting programs through which we will engage this book’s challenges together.