The Heart is a Lonely Hunter

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Article in Themes and Big Read categories.

The Big Read, a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest, is designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture. The Big Read brings together partners from across the country to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment. JMRL invites all book lovers in Central Virginia to join The Big Read throughout March 2016. Read and discuss The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers and participate in programs about the book, its themes, and its author.

We've selected a list of books, movies, and music in the JMRL collection that will inspire further exploration and enhance your reading. There is a printable version of the adult list. Find more resources and discussion questions for this book in the Big Read Reader’s Guide.


About the Author


Works by Carson McCullers


Related Reading - Fiction

McCullers’ Southern Contemporaries

Modern Southern Gothic

Small-Town America during the Depression

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Race in 1930s American South

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Related Reading - Nonfiction

  • Exceptional Women


Movies and Music

Film Adaptations of McCullers’ Work

Other Films

  • Land of Silence and Darkness (1971) – Themes of isolation and communication come to the forefront in this documentary which examines the life of Fini Straubinger, a blind and deaf woman who dedicated her life to helping others with the same affliction.

Classical Music

  • Mick is influenced by the music of Mozart and Beethoven in the book.
  • McCullers was also deeply interested in music, and was friends with the composer Benjamin Britten.

Books for Teens

Deaf Culture


Books for Youth

Picture Books

Chapter Books

Nonfiction