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October 8, 2018 | by  | in Books |
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Quick Reads to Get You Through the End of Trimester

It’s getting to that point of the trimester when there’ll be at least one person crying to their parents on the phone whenever you’re in the library. Kia kaha, my friends — we’re so close to the finish line. Reading is a far superior stress coping mechanism than tagging your friends in Bad Memes for Suffering Teens (although I wouldn’t oppose a mixed-methods approach). Not only does it offer a way to counteract your increasingly bleak moods, but ~science~ has also shown that reading is an ideal study-break activity — apparently it keeps your brain at an ideal level of stimulation to maintain productivity. Having said that, no one has time to embark on a 400 page novel when they have 3 assignments to hand in on the same day. So here, I present to you, a list of short-but-sweet texts that’ll keep your mind sharp and your heart full during the hand-in-period-hustle.
How to Find Fulfilling Work, by Roman Krznaric
Are you nearing the end of your degree, and becoming increasingly existential about your career options? This text is part of The School of Life book series, which invites academics to write short books on topics that should have been taught in high school. Titles range from How to Be a Leader to How to Think More About Sex, and they’re some of the few self-help books which draw from credible academic sources and offer up genuine substance. How to Find Fulfilling Work discusses the changing nature of the modern workforce, and the various ways that employees can make it fit for them. Portfolio careers, freelancing, starting your own business – there are heaps of alternatives to the 40 hour work week our parents know. Give it a read, and chill out about finding your dream job straight out of uni. It’s a process.

Ko Taranaki Te Maunga, by Rachel Buchanan
Everyone loves a book from the BWB text series. They’re ideal for learning just enough about a topic that you could discuss it over a glass of wine, but not enough to articulate it after 7 standard drinks. Ko Taranaki Te Maunga tells the story of the battle of Parihaka, which is an event that every New Zealander has a duty to know about, really. The battle is increasingly seen as a symbol of our insidious colonial history. The Taranaki village of Parihaka was founded in the 1860s in order to peacefully resist Māori land confiscation, acting as home for up to 2000 displaced Māori. In 1881 thousands of British troops invaded the village in an attempt to quell its protest campaigns, pillaging it so violently that the event was suppressed from Government records for many years. It’s time to remember Parihaka.
Persepolis, by Marjane Satrapi
Persepolis is a memoir in the form of a graphic novel, portraying a woman’s journey through childhood amid political struggle during the Islamic Revolution in Iran. The arresting illustrations marry with Satrapi’s subtle and emotive command of language to produce a deeply thought-provoking text. If you’re interested in Middle Eastern politics but find them hard to get your head around, this book uses a human story to explain the complexities in simpler terms. Persepolis has won multiple awards for its role in challenging authority and offering up a counter-narrative to the passive way that Middle Eastern women are portrayed in Western media. It’s pretty badass.

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