Summer Reading

SUMMER 2019

Please note that incoming or new middle school students have summer reading for English and History & Social Sciences only; they are not required to complete the summer reading assignment for Middle School Spanish courses. This does not apply to current RE students, who are required to complete a World Languages summer reading assignment.

ENGLISH

List of 8 items.

WORLD LANGUAGES: SPANISH

List of 7 items.

WORLD LANGUAGES: SPANISH

List of 8 items.

WORLD LANGUAGES: CHINESE

List of 12 items.

WORLD LANGUAGES: FRENCH

List of 12 items.

Mathematics

History and Social Sciences

List of 3 items.

History and Social Sciences

While the History and Social Sciences Department is not requiring summer reading assignments for the upper school courses, students entering 9th through 12th grade are encouraged to read material that relates to the courses they will be taking in the fall. This will allow 9th- through 12th-grade students to select topics that appeal to them and expose them to a broader and more interesting range of readings. In order to give students some direction, H&SS faculty list below suggested readings for each of the upper school courses. Students need to keep checking this list as it will continue to be updated over the summer. We hope that students will seize this opportunity to engage in intellectual pursuit for its own sake, and we look forward to hearing their thoughts in August. Happy reading!

— The History and Social Sciences Department

List of 14 items.

  • World Civilizations Since 1450

  • U.S. History

  • AP U.S. History

  • Global Studies and Entrepreneurship

    Please read daily newspapers such as The Wall Street JournalMiami Herald, and The New York Times as often as possible: You will want to focus on the Business or Economy sections of each newspaper. The Wall Street Journal offers the most comprehensive coverage in business, economics, technology, and entrepreneurship. Do not be discouraged if you cannot understand much of the jargon; repeated exposure to the language of economics and business will improve your economic literacy over time.

    You can activate your free subscription to the following newspapers by following these steps: 
    1. Log into myCOMPASS
    2. Access the Library resource page, under Resources
    3. Click on the Dan Leslie Bowden Library image link
    4. Select the Research & Learn tab and click on Periodicals  
     
    New York Times (English & Spanish editions)

    Additionally, please check out PBS's Agents for Change. This site provides inspiring and innovative global case studies in social entrepreneurship.

  • Living Religions

    Suggested Readings:

    The Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation - Stephen Mitchell
    The Dhammapada: Verses on the Way - The Buddha, Glenn Wallis (guide)
    Lovingkindness - Sharon Salzberg
    Awakening the Buddha Within - Lama Surya Das
    To Life!: A Celebration of Jewish Being and Thinking - Harold S. Kushner
    The Chosen - Chaim Potok
    Living Buddha, Living Christ - Thich Nhat Hanh
    Beyond Belief
    - Elaine Pagels
    No God but God - Reza Aslan

  • United States Government

    Suggested Readings:

    Words That Work: It’s Not What You Say, It’s What People Hear
    - Dr. Frank Luntz
    The Thirteen American Arguments - Howard Fineman
    A Brilliant Solution - Carol Berkin
    The Audacity of Hope - Barack Obama
    Sleeping with the Devil: How Washington Sold its Soul for Saudi Crude - Robert Baer
    Profiles in Courage - John F. Kennedy, Jr.
    Report on the Investigation into Russian Interference in the 2016 Election - Robert S. Mueller, III

  • Philosophy Honors

    Suggested Readings:

    The Death and Life of Great American
    Cities, Jane Jacobs
    Thinks, David Lodge
    California, Edan Lepucki
    The Federalist Papers
    Middlesex, Jeffrey Eugenides
    The Semisovereign People, Elmer Eric Schattschneider
    The Sound and the Fury, William Falkner
    From Beirut to Jerusalem, Thomas Friedman
    Chaos: Making a New Science, James Gleick
    Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Philip Dick
  • U.S. Criminal Justice System Honors

    Suggested Readings:

    Devil In The Grove, by Gilbert King
    Few people know that Florida had more lynchings than any other state, and is still the home to several KKK chapters.  This Pulitzer Prize-winning book chronicles the story of the Groveland boys, 4 black men who were (falsely) accused of the rape of a white woman in the late 1940s, in Lake County, Florida, the ensuing investigation and trial, and the backdrop of the burgeoning civil rights movement.  The story pits a Lake County sheriff (and KKK member) against Thurgood Marshall and his legal team at the NAACP, and it shows the danger of an unchecked criminal justice system plagued by racial bias and hate.

    The Divide, by Matt Taibbi
    In this book, published after the worst of the 2008 recession, Taibbi looks at the growing divide in our society — essentially, the fact that different sets of rules exist for the wealthy and the non-wealthy.  Taibbi explores why residents of poor (and often minority) neighborhoods face criminal prosecution for things that go unnoticed in wealthier (and white) neighborhoods; why big banks largely escaped criminal liability for their role in the “Great Recession,” while locally owned banks were pursued by prosecutors; and essentially how our economy and our overall society does not come close to the “level playing field” that is often espoused as an ideal.
  • AP Comparative Government & Politics

    Suggested Readings:

    Without You, There Is No Us, by Suki Kim
    In 2011, the journalist Suki Kim went undercover as a missionary and a teacher to a school in North Korea where the sons of the North Korean elite are educated.  In this memoir of her year teaching English, the author paints a chilling picture of what it’s like to live under a totalitarian regime that controls every aspect of its citizens’ lives.  She chronicles not only her interactions with her students, but also the carefully scripted outings she was allowed to go on, and the enormous efforts made to hide the true devastation throughout the country, and to deify the Supreme Leader through propaganda, brainwashing, and fear.
     
    The Looming Tower, by Lawrence Wright
    This Pulitzer Prize-winning book tells the story of the rise of the extremist group that eventually became al Qaeda, and how this unlikely collection of religious fanatics killed thousands on September 11, 2001.  The gripping narrative follows both the rise of Osama bin Laden and his associates, and it closely chronicles the failures within the U.S. government and across the globe that led to our failure to stop the attacks.  Certainly, both the political and sociological lessons from 9/11 have informed governments across the world in the nearly two decades since the attacks, both in terms of how to improve our intelligence systems to prevent such attacks, as well as identifying the ideological foundations for extremist groups like al Qaeda.
  • AP European History

    Eugene F. Rice, Jr. and Anthony Grafton’s The Foundations of Early Modern Europe, 1460-1559 (W.W. Norton & Co., 2nd ed., 1994).
    *Rice and Grafton address both the subtle and dramatic changes which occur as Europe transitions socially, commercially, politically and artistically from a medieval world to a world where the foundations of modernity emerge.
     
    Carl E. Schorske, Fin-De-Siecle Vienna: Politics and Culture (University of Chicago Press, 1980).
    *Schorske’s a Pulitzer Prize Winning book gives a magnificent revelation of turn-of-the-century Vienna where out of a crisis of political and social disintegration so much of modern art and thought was born.
     
  • AP Macroeconomics / Microeconomics

    Please read daily newspapers such as The Wall Street Journal, Miami Herald, and The New York Times as often as possible: You will want to focus on the Business or Economy sections of each newspaper. The Wall Street Journal offers the most comprehensive coverage in business, economics, technology, and entrepreneurship. Do not be discouraged if you cannot understand much of the jargon; repeated exposure to the language of economics and business will improve your economic literacy over time.

    You can activate your free subscription to the following newspapers by following these steps: 
    1. Log into myCOMPASS
    2. Access the Library resource page, under Resources
    3. Click on the Dan Leslie Bowden Library image link
    4. Select the Research & Learn tab and click on Periodicals  
     
    New York Times (English & Spanish editions)

  • AP Psychology

  • AP U.S. Government & Politics

    Suggested Readings:
     
    What Money Can’t Buy, by Michael Sandel
    Should parents pay kids for reading books?  Should inmates be able to pay for a “luxury” prison cell?  Should patients be able to buy “concierge” medical care?  In this book, Sandel, who is a Harvard Professor of Philosophy, explores how our entire society is becoming “marketized.”  Through a variety of engaging stories and case studies, he looks at what is lost in our society once we start putting a dollar value on everything.  This book was accompanied by several outstanding public talks, in which Sandel engages the audience to try to answer the question of whether there is anything that money shouldn’t be able to buy.

    The Divide, by Matt Taibbi
    In this book, published after the worst of the 2008 recession, Taibbi looks at the growing divide in our society — essentially, the fact that different sets of rules exist for the wealthy and the non-wealthy.  Taibbi explores why residents of poor (and often minority) neighborhoods face criminal prosecution for things that go unnoticed in wealthier (and white) neighborhoods; why big banks largely escaped criminal liability for their role in the “Great Recession,” while locally owned banks were pursued by prosecutors; and essentially how our economy and our overall society does not come close to the “level playing field” that is often espoused as an ideal.

  • AP World History

    Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
    Anthony Pagden, People and Empires: A Short History of European Migration, Exploration, and Conquest, from Greece to the Present
    Gordon Kerr, A Short History of China: From Ancient Dynasties to Economic Powerhouse
    Eric Wolf, Sons of the Shaking Earth
    Mark Kurlansky, Salt: A World History
    Gregory David Roberts, Shantaram
    Adam Hochschild, King Leopold’s Ghost
    Vartan Gregorian, Islam: A Mosaic, Not a Monolith
    Dava Sobel, Longitude: The True Story of a Lone Genius Who Solved the Greatest Scientific Problem of His Time

For further information regarding summer reading, please call 305 460 8885 or email Katrina Patchett, Director of Bookstores, or Sara Scarfone, Upper School Bookstore Associate. Please note the Bookstore will be closed from June 17 through July 1 and will re-open for the rest of the summer on July 2.

Coconut Grove, FL 33133
Middle School2045 South Bayshore DriveTel: 305-250-6850
Upper School3575 Main HighwayTel: 305-460-8800
Founded in 1903, Ransom Everglades School is a coeducational, college preparatory day school for grades 6 - 12 located on two campuses in Coconut Grove, Florida. Ransom Everglades School produces graduates who "believe that they are in the world not so much for what they can get out of it as for what they can put into it." The mission of Ransom Everglades School is to provide an educational environment in which the pursuit of honor, academic excellence and intellectual growth is complemented by concern for the physical, cultural and character development of each student. The school provides rigorous college preparation that promotes the student's sense of identity, community, personal integrity and values for a productive and satisfying life, and prepares the student to lead and to contribute to society.