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Archived Reading Groups

All but the last two years of book club groups at Texas Tech University Library

February Schedule

Recovering the Classics Art Exhibit 
Feb. 8, 2016 7 – 9 p.m.
University Library Room 309
Parking on TTU Campus 

Book Discussion
Feb. 15, 2016 7 – 9 p.m.
University Library Room 309
Parking on TTU Campus

Book Discussion
Feb. 22, 2016 7 – 9 p.m.
University Library Room 309
Parking on TTU Campus

Speaker Bios

Feb. 8, 2016
Dorothy Chansky
Dorothy Chansky is Director of the Humanities Center and teaches on the History/Theory/Criticism track in the School of Theatre and Dance at TTU. She is Vice President of the American Theatre and Drama Society.  Dr. Chansky holds a Ph.D. in Performance Studies from New York University.  She is the author of two books, Composing Ourselves: The Little Theatre Movement and the American Audience(Southern Illinois UP, 2004); and the forthcoming Kitchen Sink Realisms: Domestic Labor, Dining, and Drama on the American State (U of Iowa P, 2015) and co-editor, with Ann Folino White, of Food and Theatre on the World Stage (Routledge, 2015).

Andrew Martin
Andrew Martin is Interim Dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts and Professor of Studio Art (painting and drawing) in the School of Art at Texas Tech University.  He holds the Master of Fine Art degree in studio art with emphasis in painting from the University of California, Los Angeles, and the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in studio art, magna cum laude, from the University of New Mexico. His work is held in public and private collections in Albuquerque, Sacramento and Columbus, and several cities in Texas, including Lubbock, Dallas, Houston, and McAllen. 


Feb. 15, 2016
Kelly Cukrowicz

Kelly C. Cukrowicz, Ph.D., Associate Professor in Psychological Sciences, and Chair of the Institutional Review Board. Dr. Cukrowicz joined the faculty in 2006 after receiving her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Florida State University in 2005 and a National Institute of Aging-funded postdoctoral fellowship at Duke’s Center for Aging and Human Development in 2006. Her research focuses on suicide risk in older adults and those who live in rural communities. She is particularly interested in interpersonal variables that increase risk for suicide, and factors associated with disclosure of suicide risk.


Robert R. Paine
Robert R. Paine completed his Ph.D. in Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. His MA degree comes from the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is currently a Professor of Anthropology at TTU. His research and scholarly activities include forensic skeletal histology, as it is used in bone identification and age assessment; paleopathological work among Mediterranean populations from Italy, Turkey and Cyprus, and trauma analysis to bone. His forensic consultant practice includes 20 years in West Texas working with the Lubbock Medical Examiner's office, Texas Rangers from Companies C & E, and local law enforcement offices. His visiting academic appointments have included the Department of Animal & Human Biology, Universita "La Sapienza", Roma, Italia; and the School of History, Classics and Archaeology, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland. He is a voting Member of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.


Feb. 22, 2016
Marjean Purinton
Author of Romantic Ideology Unmasked: The Mentally Constructed Tyrannies in Dramas of William Wordsworth, Lord Byron, Percy Shelley, and Joanna Baillie, and the forthcoming Staging Grotesques and Ghosts: British Romantic Techno-gothic Drama, as well as articles on Romantic drama, early 19th-century women writers, feminist theory and pedagogy.  A member of the Teaching Academy and a recipient of a President's Excellence in Teaching Award, she teaches in the Women's Studies Program and is the Teaching Section Editor for the online project British Women Playwrights Around 1800. She is past President of the International Conference on Romanticism. 

Robert Louis Stevenson

In his short life (1850-1894), Robert Louis Stevenson became one of the most popular novelists, poets, essayists, and travel writers of his day. His novels include Treasure Island (1881), Kidnapped (1886), The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886), and Black Arrow (1888), which are still widely read. His poor health made schooling difficult, but he showed talent and the desire at an early age to become a writer.  Appreciation for him as a writer has been mixed over the years—considered a children’s author by some, and a writer of originality and power by others. Today many see his novels as an adventure story wrapped around a morality tale. 

The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is a Gothic novel about a man with a split personality and blends elements typical of most Gothic stories: horror and romanticism. The phrase ‘a Jekyll and Hyde’ personally is now popularly used to describe a person whose actions seem contradictory or hard to explain. 


This Reading Group is sponsored in part by the Humanities Center at Texas Tech,
Dorothy Chansky, Director. 
Texas Tech Humanities Center Banner

Recovering the Classics Pop-up Gallery Photo Slideshow

Recovering the Classics Library Exhibit

The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Call for Artiist

Selected Films

1996 Mary Reilly, directed by Stephen Frears (Tristar Pictures) actors: John Malkovich, Julia Roberts, Glenn Close, Michael Gambon, George Cole; screenplay: Christopher Hampton.

1994 The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, directed by Charles Jarrott (MPI Home Video); actors: Jack Palance, Billie Whitelaw, Denholm Elliot.

1953 Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (Universal Studios); actors: Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Boris Karloff.

1941 Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, directed by Victor Fleming (MGM); actors Spencer Tracy, Ingrid Bergman, Donald Crisp, Ian Hunter, Lana Turner; screen play: John Lee Mahin.

1931 Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, directed by Rouben Mamoulian (Paramount Pictures); actors: Frederic March, Holmes Herbert (Lanyon), Halliwell Hobbes (Carew); screenplay: Samuel Hoffenstein & Percy Heath.

Discussion Questions & Bibliography by Marjean Purinton, Feb 22

Questions provided by Marjean D. Purinton, Professor of English; Affiliated Faculty, Women’s Studies 

Romantic-Period Medicine, Monsters, and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde 

Discussion Questions  

  • While we usually think of Mr. Hyde as the psychological and moral dark side of Dr. Jekyll, is it possible for us to consider Hyde as the embodiment of a grotesque, a monster whose physique does not comport with late Victorian standards of the normal, proper body?

  • Is it possible to read Dr. Jekyll as a failed anatomist who turns to the lure of alchemy and potions made possible by the impure mixture of his drug?  What kind of drug do you think Jekyll is taking?  Is Jekyll a drug addict?  Are the symptoms of addiction written on the body?

  • What kind of research and experimentation might Dr. Jekyll be doing that merits the censure of Dr. Lanyon?  Does Victor Frankenstein haunt this novella?  Why did late-Victorian society need another “monster” novel?

  • Has twenty-first-century American culture progressed beyond that of late-Victorian England in its responses to individuals who are challenged by bodies whose functions might not be described as “normal”?  How, for example, are we reacting to maimed service men and women returning from Iraq and Afghanistan?  Has Stevenson’s novella impelled us to think differently about disability?

  • You’ve listened to three different but scientifically grounded ways to read and think about The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  In what ways have these perspectives enriched the novella for you?  In what ways had you not considered the psychological, forensic, and medical aspects of the novella?  Do the three approaches complement or conflict with each other?  Which one do you find most compelling?