Each year, the Chicago Public Library Foundation sponsors a great program called One Book, One Chicago (OBOC). The question that the program asks is “What if all of Chicago read the same book at the same time?” It started in 2001, and over the years they have continued to add programming supporting discussions around each title.
In 2013, they expanded the idea so that it’s not just about a book, but about a theme emphasized in the book, and that the program offerings would expand throughout the system.
This year the theme is “Imagine The Future” and the book is Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Chicago born author Philip K. Dick.
In case you don’t know the story, here’s a synopsis (courtesy of OBOC)
By 2021, the World War has killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remain covet any living creature, and for people who can’t afford one, companies built incredibly realistic simulacra: horses, birds, cats, sheep. They’ve even built humans. Immigrants to Mars receive androids so sophisticated they are indistinguishable from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans can wreak, the government bans them from Earth. Driven into hiding, unauthorized androids live among human beings, undetected. Rick Deckard, an officially sanctioned bounty hunter, is commissioned to find rogue androids and “retire” them. But when cornered, androids fight back–with lethal force.
There are all kinds of events going on in support of the book. These include discussions, film series, lectures, and more. There’s also a Spotify playlist (provided by community radio station CHIRP), Maker Lab programs, walking tours, art programs, and game nights.
HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN ONE BOOK ONE CHICAGO
There are over 84 events scheduled with OBOC, so I will highlight a few that look especially great, and encourage you to go over to the OBOC website and explore all the programs for yourself.
Please note that not all of these are suitable for all ages, and the book itself is also geared at an older set, so please use your own discretion on bringing young children.
SCIENCE FICTION BOARD GAME NIGHT. Various branches will be hosting board game nights, and playing science fiction games including The Resistance, Coup, Star Fluxx, Smash Up: Science Fiction, and Grifters. SEE AVAILABLE DATES AND BRANCHES
CHICAGO’S UNBUILT PROJECTS. Author and historian Max Grinnell will talk about the many projects that might have changed Chicago. These include the unified Civic Center, Frank Lloyd Wright’s mile-high skyscraper, and other projects. Grinnell will also lead a set of walking tours around the city that showcase the future and the past of Chicago.
See a Schedule for Chicago’s Unbuilt Projects
See Schedule for Max Grinnell Walking Tours
HOW TO INVENT EVERYTHING: Author Ryan North will discuss his guide for waylaid time travelers and how they would build and sustain an entire civilization.
Thursday Feb 21 at 6 pm Pritzer Auditorium, 400 South State Street .FIND OUT MORE
THE SCIENCE OF STAR WARS. Physicist Dirk K. Morr discusses the physical laws and concepts underlying the scientific advances portrayed and Star Wars. He will discuss which are possible and which are beyond our reach. FIND OUT MORE
IKEBANA FUTURISTIC: See the Universe through Ikebana free style floral arrangements that transcend time and space. A hands on workshop led by expert Margot Wang. SEE TIMES AND PLACES.
To find out more about One Book One Chicago, visit http://www.onebookonechicago.org