Members of the campus community will take turns reading all 26 chapters of The Catcher in the Rye aloud from beginning to end. The text will be brought to life with photos, musical interludes, and themed food. Limited copies of the book and t-shirts commemorating the evening will be available. The event, which is the first celebrating the Year of the Library, will run approximately until midnight.
Salinger’s short stay at Ursinus, where he took English literature, composition, biology, history and French III, is documented in Shane Salerno’s 2013 documentary, Salinger, and in Ian Hamilton’s 2011 biography, In Search of J.D. Salinger. He was also the subject of a 1997 BBC commentary that aired on PBS and was filmed partially at Ursinus. A memoir written by his daughter discloses that her father admired the “lack of pretension” at Ursinus. For one semester, Salinger was the drama critic for the Ursinus student newspaper. He wrote a column called “Musings of a Social Soph: The Skipped Diploma,” copies of which remain in the library archives.