Lee Literature Students And Faculty Host Film Night

Monday, October 23, 2017 - by Charity Parris, Lee University
Dr. Donna Summerlin with local students and Lee students in the university’s Communication Arts Building
Dr. Donna Summerlin with local students and Lee students in the university’s Communication Arts Building

Lee’s Department of Language and Literature recently local middle and high school students for a viewing and discussion of the film “The Book Thief.” 

Directed by Dr. Donna Summerlin, professor of English at Lee, the event welcomed a number of middle and high school students, local educators, parents, and Lee student volunteers. 

“I’m very grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with area teachers and schools in providing this event for students,” said Dr. Summerlin. “It is gratifying indeed to see younger students who engage with the film and participate enthusiastically in the discussion groups.” 

Participants gathered from Bradley Central High School, Cleveland High School, East Hamilton High School, Girls Preparatory School of Chattanooga, Silverdale Baptist, Tennessee Christian Preparatory School, and Walker Valley High School. 

Dr. Summerlin’s Young Adult Literature students assisted in coordinating the evening’s activities. They prepared questions and discussion prompts relating to the book and film version of “The Book Thief,” ranging from general reader response to text-to-film changes. 

“The film night was impactful not only to the local students who attended, but to me as a future educator,” said Kaylin Gaylord, junior English education major. “It gave me a creative space to share my passion for literature and film with young students, who in turn, hopefully will look at film adaptations of books in a new way. Being able to spend face-to-face time with students is always special to me.” 

“The Book Thief” tells the story of Liesel Meminger, a nine-year-old German girl who is given up by her mother to live with foster parents Hans and Rosa Hubermann in the small town of Molching in 1939, shortly before World War II. During her time there, she secretly learns to read, and in recognizing the power of writing and sharing the written word, Liesel begins to steal books the Nazi party is looking to destroy. 

The Lee University Leonard Center and Communication Arts Department helped to sponsor the event. 

For more information about Lee’s Department of Language and Literature and other events, call 614-8210.

Lee students Emma Crouse, left, Alexa Knight, middle, and Nicole Shennett, right, discussing “The Book Thief” with local middle and high school students
Lee students Emma Crouse, left, Alexa Knight, middle, and Nicole Shennett, right, discussing “The Book Thief” with local middle and high school students

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