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Cradles of Eminence: Childhoods of More Than 700 Famous Men and Women Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 456 pages
  • Publisher: Gifted Psychology Press; 2 edition (June 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 091070757X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0910707572
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #307,741 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Must Read!" -- Today's Books<br /><br />"Fascinating to read...a wealth of anecdotal information about the youthful struggles of truly remarkable people" --Midwest Book Review, August 2004

About the Author

Victor Goertzel, a psychologist specializing in psychotherapy, was past president of the National Association for Gifted Children. Mildred George Goertzel directed a school for emotionally disturbed children. Ted George Goertzel is a professor and former chairperson in the sociology department at Rutgers University in Camden, NJ. Ariel Hansen is a recent graduate from Haverford College and works in the field of science journalism.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 20, 2004
Format: Hardcover
In grad school, we used to say that a classic is a book that was written in a foreign language and that no one reads. "Cradles of Eminence" is a classic, but it's wonderful. And it's fun. It's even well written. Who would have guessed?
I picked up the new edition because I remember studying the findings in psych classes years ago and because my kids seem to be very bright (no comments about probable paternity, please).
The book is a hoot. Tale after tale of famous folks' childhoods: enough anecdotes to keep one appearing brilliant for a thousand dinner parties. The analyses of what makes a great person great - the substance of the book's look at eminent people's childhoods - are well done (and the lessons of the book)...but they are no where as much fun as the stories and anecdotes. Great stuff on overprotective mothers (including Mao, FDR, Toulouse-Lautrec), hatred of school (almost all), love of learning (most), etc.
For what it's worth, the updates from relatives of the original authors is worthwhile (from a son and a neice -- makes sense given the book's topic: Yes?). I mean who wants to only know about Edison's, Twain's or Tolstoi's upbringing when you can also have juicy bits about the early homes of Oprah, George W, and Hillary.
I guess I could use the analyses of how to raise extraordinary kids...OK, more correctly, analyses of how extraordinary people were raised. In my next life, I'll read more to my kids, make sure their mother is constantly supportive and praising, discuss important political and social stuff at the dinner table, etc. I know I'm doing well on one count: My kids parents are strongly opinionated. That's one of the characteristics of parents of successful kids.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By S.A.M. on April 1, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This book is a fascinating look at the family patterns of eminent individuals across many generations. I couldn't put it down. If you like biographies, this is the ultimate collection of interesting stories.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on August 10, 2004
Format: Paperback
Also available in a hardcover edition (0910707561, $39.95), this newly published, updated, and expanded second edition of Ted Goertzel and Ariel Hanzen's Cradles Of Eminence: Childhoods Of More Than 700 Famous Men And Women features the childhood biographies of more than 700 outstanding personalities. These sketches of the formative years of distinguished individuals reveal amazing insights into factors that can contribute to greatness, particularly in todays demanding and ever-changing world. Fascinating to read in its own right, and a wealth of anecdotal information about the youthful struggles of truly remarkable people including Alfred Hitchcock, Oprah Winfrey, Helen Keller, The Dalai Lama, Pablo Picasso, and many more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Peter C. Moore on September 14, 2009
Format: Paperback
A very good summary of many famous people. However, the book rarely goes into their lives in any depth, and seems sketchy. The original version was more helpful. But this revision is still useful. Just not as much.
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