Discussion questions for the winter reading, Coop, are found below. Please respond to any or all of them, depending on what appeals to you the most or simply reflect on the book and/or comments. As a reminder, in collaboration with students and campus events, the discussion topics were created by and will involve Morris students! We hope you join along.
1. How does Coop compare to other memoirs you have read? Other books about farming and rural life?
2. This book was on the bestseller list. How does this book “play” in other parts of the country? What is the appeal beyond the Midwest?
3. The hardcover title, Coop: A Year of Poultry, Pigs, and Parenting, was changed to Coop: A family, A Farm, and the Pursuit of One Good Egg for the paperback edition. Which do you think fits the book better? Why do you think the publisher changed it?
4. As I read Coop, I am sometimes disoriented in time and memories. Sometimes it takes me a moment to realize that I am in a memory of a twelve year old or the memory of last weekend. Time seems fluid and often overlapping in this memoir. What could Perry mean by constructing his memoir in this way? What is its effect?
5. What role does place have in Perry‘s ideas of home? Of family?
6. Michael Perry is coming to Morris in March for the Prairie Gate Literary Festival. What questions would you like to ask him?