Friday, April 22, 2022 at 3:00 PM PDT
Sunday, April 24, 2022 at 1:00 PM PDT

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Asilomar Conference Grounds 
800 Asilomar Avenue
Pacific Grove, CA 93950-5310

Driving Directions 


Sheri Kindsvater 
Great Books Council of San Francisco 

The Barbara McConnell Weekend at Asilomar Presented By Great Books San Francisco 

Dear Great Books Supporter,

 One of the major events of the year for the Great Books Council of San Francisco is the Spring weekend at the Asilomar Conference Center in Monterey, California, named in honor of beloved Great Books leader Barbara McConnell. During the weekend there are discussions of poetry, a work of nonfiction, a work of theatre and a work of fiction. We are all excited about being able to return to this uniquely beautiful retreat and immerse ourselves in a weekend of provocative readings, engaging discussions and in-person camaraderie!

This year we will again be discussing outstanding works and selections of poetry literally spanning centuries of writing but exploring enduring issues. Please check out the special pricing and discounts available for the first time!


 We'll kick off the Asilomar weekend with an evening of intense and challenging poetry discussions featuring works by Anne Sexton, Jean Valentine, Emily Dickinson and Dylan Thomas.

These poems will be provided as a PDF document attachment with your registration confirmation in order that you can easily print them.

On Saturday morning we’ll continue with our non-fiction discussion with Azar Nafisi’s, Reading Lolita in Tehran – a stirring memoir of both surviving  changes and the struggle to survive. It has been called “resonant and deeply affecting . . . an eloquent brief on the transformative powers of fiction–on the refuge from ideology that art can offer to those living under tyranny, and art’s affirmative and subversive faith in the voice of the individual.”

Before dinner, starting at 4:30pm, we will be having a catered Meet & Greet where long-time bookies can welcome new attendees, share experiences, their local groups, and best reads while enjoying local brews and bottlings.

In the evening, we’ll continue with our fiction discussion. Mark Twain’s  Letters for the Earthas we examine archangel Satan’s letters to Michael and Gabriel on the curious proceedings of earthly life and the nature of man's religions. Twain's writings in here find him at perhaps his most quizzical and questioning state ever.

Wrapping up on Sunday morning, our play this year is Lysistrata by Aristophanes. Deemed unacceptably subversive by Greeks in 411 BC and more recently banned in the U.S. until the 1930’s… Athenian heroine Lysistrata and a group of women from various city-states throughout Greece first agree to withhold sex from their warring partners until peace is declared, and then take over the Acropolis, halting access to much-needed money to fund the war.


Asilomar Conference Grounds is now handling all reservations for rooms and meals.  Your payment to them will include both.  You will need to complete both steps to be fully registered for the conference.

First complete your lodging reservation by clicking the link below using these instructions. 

If you are staying in a room with someone you are registering with, you will need to select the Single Room option and it will allow you to add a person by increasing the Guests per Room to 2 and later filing in the guest information for both.

If you wish to room with someone who is registering separately, select the Double Occupancy option and when you are asked to fill in your guest information, please add your roommate's name into the Requests box.  You will need to both be registered within five days of each other.

If you are asking for a roommate to be assigned to you, select the Double Occupany option without entering a roommate name and Asilomar will assign one to you.



Next you will need to finish your registration by RETURNING to this page and registering for the conference itself.  This fee is collected by Great Books San Francisco to cover conference costs.