Sloth: From Vice to Virtue | Newberry

Sloth: From Vice to Virtue

Led by Harrison Sherrod and Emma Furman. Four sessions. 6 - 7:30 pm
Thursday, June 13, 2019
Thursdays, June 13 - July 11 (class will not meet on July 4)

6 - 7:30 pm

Cost and Registration Information

Early Registration Price (May 7 at 9 am** – May 24 at 4 pm): $170
Regular Registration Price (May 24 at 4 pm – first day of class): $187

** Registration opens online at 9 am. Phone registration will be accepted starting at 10 am.

Members, seniors, and students get a 10% discount.

Register Online

Seminar Description

One of the seven deadly sins, sloth, is usually understood as a vice akin to laziness, apathy, or indecision. The object of this team-taught seminar will be to recuperate sloth as a virtue. Treating Bartleby the Scrivener’s “I would prefer not to” as our mantra, we will consider authors and artists who extol the benefits of sloth, including John Lennon, Samuel Beckett, and Otessa Moshfegh, the novelist of last year’s smash hit, My Year of Rest and Relaxation.

Four sessions. E – $170, L – $187

Harrison Sherrod manages a documentary film production company by day and teaches strange seminars at the Newberry by night.
Emma Furman is a poet from Evanston, Illinois. She holds an MFA from the University of Alabama and has taught writing and literature for eight years.

Materials List


  • A selection of shorter materials distributed by the instructor.
  • Herman Melville, Bartleby the Scrivener. Any print copy is acceptable and there are also free versions online.

First Reading:

  • For the first class, please read the entirety of Bartleby the Scrivener.

This class is part of the Newberry’s Adult Education Seminars Program. Learn more about our registration procedures.