What we’re reading: Afsaneh Sharif

“What we’re reading” is a regular feature in Dialogues, CTLT’s bi-monthly newsletter. In each edition, one staffer at CTLT will share what they’re currently reading and offer some poignant suggestions for your reading list.

Afsaneh Sharif, CTLT senior project manager and faculty liaison, shares her reading list from the March 2019 edition:

What is the best book you’ve recently read?

Tara Westover’s Educated. This is a wonderful memoir by Westover who is the seventh child of Mormon parents in Idaho. She was 17 the first time she set foot in a classroom. Her mother, an herbal healer, and father, a man who claimed to have prophetic power, owned a scrapyard. I love how Tara examines her childhood with curiosity and love — even for those who have seriously failed or wronged her. She writes about her struggles perfectly to find her ways to her truth.

Michelle Obama’s Becoming. I’ve just started this book and am enjoying it very much. Through great storytelling, she invites readers into her world — from her childhood home in Chicago to her time at “the world’s most famous address.” I like how wisely she has chosen her words and told her story to inspire women and girls around world.

What are you most looking forward to reading next?

The Persian translation of Elif Shafak’s novel, The Forty Rules of Love, focused on love in the light of Rumi and Shams of Tabriz.

Persian poets like Rumi and Hafez have also inspired me throughout my life and I love spending time with their poetry. I highly recommend Hafez’s Dance of Life and Masnavi, a collection of about 3,000 lines of poetry that Rumi used as the delivery means for his spiritual teaching to his chosen student.