“Read Wisconsin” is Upper House’s quarterly gathering of book lovers. During our gathering, we enjoy appetizers and discuss fine books written by Wisconsinites or about Wisconsin; we also consider ways a Christian perspective can shed light on and deepen our insight into what we read. This quarter’s book is Wallace Stegner’s beloved novel, Crossing to Safety (1987, Random House).
Set at UW-Madison beginning in the late 1930s, Crossing to Safety recounts the formation of a friendship between two young English Literature faculty and their spouses—an intimate friendship that would last a lifetime. The book is semi-autobiographical. Stegner did indeed teach at UW-Madison from 1937 to 1939; and he and his wife, Mary, did form a deep and enduring friendship with another couple with whom they remained very close. After leaving Wisconsin, Stegner went on to teach at Harvard University and then to Stanford University, where he founded a creative writing program. There his long list of students included everyone from Ken Kesey to Wendell Berry. Stegner is one of America’s most important writers as well as an influential environmental activist.
Please join us at Upper House on Wednesday, October 19, from 4:00-5:30 PM. We will begin with a short presentation on the life and work of Wallace Stegner and then discuss his novel.
If you do not own a copy of Crossing to Safety, you can purchase your own version here or through another venue of your choice. (An e-book version is priced around $13).
Upper House Associate Director, Cam Anderson, will lead this discussion. Cam is a visual artist and a writer. He joined the Upper House team in 2018. Cam is co-editor of God in the Modern Wing: Viewing Art with Eyes of Faith (IVP Academic, 2021) and author of The Faithful Artist: A Vision for Evangelicalism and the Arts (IVP Academic, 2016).