Initiatives > Talking Service: A Reading & Discussion Program > How it works

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Standing Down is a reading and discussion program for veterans, providing a space for them to reflect on their service as well as the challenges and opportunities of transitioning from active duty to civilian life. In the program, veterans read and discuss a series of thematically related works of literature over the course of four sessions. At each discussion session, they come together with other veterans and are led by a local facilitator. All readings are selected from the Great Books Foundation’s anthology, Standing Down: From Warrior to Civilian. The anthology is the centerpiece for the series of reading discussions. It features works of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, essays, journalism, public documents, and memoirs. Excerpts range from Shakespeare and George Washington to Ernest Hemingway, Margaret Atwood, and Tim O'Brien.