New School Year, New Titles: September Content Update

Virginia Woolf once argued: “All the months are crude experiments, out of which the perfect September is made.” Looking at our content update for this month, no statement could be truer! We’ve curated a selection of works spanning your every need, from back-to-school essentials and college classics to brand-new fiction releases. How much closer to perfection can you get? 

But September is almost over, so let’s walk back through a few of the titles that made this month oh-so-perfect: 

“The Tragedy of the Commons” by Garrett Hardin

If you’re taking an intro class of just about any subject—from history and ecology to ethics and economy—Hardin’s classic (if controversial) 1968 essay is likely on your reading list.

Certain that human population growth would outstrip Earth’s carrying capacity, Hardin argued that crucial resources should be made inaccessible to the public and strictly regulated to avoid falling victim to the tragedy of the commons. His classic essay is likely on your syllabus, so be sure to dig into our analysis section to prepare for the inevitable in-class debate that’s sure to follow.

The History of Sexuality by Michel Foucault

Just like Hardin’s essay, Foucault’s 1976 study of Western sexuality has become a syllabus staple. In this first of four volumes, Foucault challenged modern and historical assumptions about the nature of sexuality. In doing so, he intended to understand how human sexuality appears across time.

As much philosophy as history, The History of Sexuality was a landmark publication and ignited fiery conversations about long-ignored subjects. Foucault’s work can be dense and deeply thoughtful. So, if you feel bogged down by the occasional abstract philosophical musing, check out our chapter summaries for a chapter-by-chapter breakdown of Foucault’s most difficult ideas.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Was Hardin’s conclusion too bleak? Was Foucault’s philosophy too dense? Not to worry—we’ve got the perfect antidote: Taylor Jenkins Reid’s wildly successful work of feminist fiction features a reclusive movie star finally sharing her truth with the world. Featuring seven husbands, countless dramas, and one rookie reporter tasked with telling it all, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo promises fast-paced, high-stakes insight into the world of old Hollywood in all its glam and grit. 

Evelyn Hugo’s life story is perfect for fans of slow-burn romances, hidden secrets, feminist musings, and LGBTQ+ pride. In true movie star fashion, Evelyn is captivating, enticing, and can’t-look-away fascinating. Curious how one woman can accumulate seven husbands? Our chapter summaries have all the juicy deets!

Need more eNotes?

If you’ve blazed through our content update but still need more, try out one of our five tips to add fall whimsy into your reading habits, or take a leaf out of our book and learn how to conquer classic literature. 

And…that’s a wrap on the most perfect month of the year!