'Great War/Great Read' - exploring classic writing of the First World War in Kansas City

Posted on centenarynews.com on 29 July 2014
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An American initiative encouraging people to explore the classic literature of the First World War is being launched in Kansas City by the National World War 1 Museum and Kansas City Public Library.

Great War/Great Read will feature a series of community-wide book discussions and more than 15 public programmes and lectures involving internationally renowned authors and historians.

Dr. Matthew Naylor, National World War 1 Museum President and CEO, said: "During the Centennial, the international spotlight will shine on Kansas City as the world explores the effects and enduring impact of the Great War.

 "This partnership between the National World War 1 Museum and Kansas City Public Library not only encourages the reading of classic works, but also brings additional recognition to Kansas City by welcoming scholars from across the world to speak to our great city."

Residents in the greater Kansas City area are encouraged to attend the public programmes associated with Great War/Great Read as well as revisit the acclaimed World War I literary classics, All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Remarque, and The Guns of August by Barbara W. Tuchman. 

Kansas City Public Library Director Crosby Kemper III noted: "History has never seen worse than the evils of the slaughter of World War I, and yet the literature conceived from it is extraordinary. Even today, this period in history is fertile ground for scholars, authors, and poets. It was a terrible war that gave us great literature."

Great War/Great Read starts on August 3rd, 2014 (the 100th anniversary of France and Germany going to war) with a discussion at the National World War 1 Museum about the role of World War 1 in global and Kansas City history. 

It will be followed by a screening of the remastered 1930 Academy Award-winning film All Quiet on the Western Front.

Full details of Great War/Great Read events can be found here

Information and images supplied by National World War 1 Museum and Kansas City Public Library

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News